‘It should be people-centred budget’

DODOMA:A CROSS section of citizens have expressed their optimism on the forthcoming 2024/25 national budget to be tabled today in the National Assembly in Dodoma, but stressed that it should be people-centered.

In a separate interview, they told the ‘Daily News’ that despite their high expectations the budget should reflect the common citizens’ lives.

A food vendor from Veterinary Market in Temeke, Dar es Salaam, Ms Amina Mohamed said she hoped that the government would lower taxes on fuel to ease transport costs that contribute to increase prices for food products.

“The hike in foods’ prices directly affects my business as it brings difficulties to retain customers since I have to either reduce the quantity of food or increase the price… for customers this becomes a challenge,” she said.

She added that a big percentage of her customers in the market are of low income so she expects that the budget will reflect the life of a low- income Tanzanian.

Another Dar es Salaam resident who was purchas- ing various building materials in Buruguni , Mr John- son Lukiza, said he hope the government will announce tax cuts on construction materials to lower their prices in the market and make it easier for Tanzanians to have better houses.

However, he added that he was optimistic that the bud- get would benefit Tanzanians economically, because in the implementation of development projects such as road, railway, airports construction, citizens will get both direct and indirect jobs.

“Execution of several development projects always brings major benefits to com- mon citizens such as street food vendors and suppliers of materials among others.

Mr Elius Lukumay who is a Dar es Salaam resident said he is optimistic that the budget will reflect people’s lives and addressing various challenges such as scarcity of US dollar, something which has led to the price hike of various products.

“I also expect the budget will accommodate various infrastructures issues to address the congestion in populated cities such as Dar es Salaam, Arusha, Dodoma and Mwanza a thing that will speed up the country’s economy,” he asserted.

In Rukwa Region, some people in Sumbawanga Municipality interviewed by this paper separately are optimistic that the national budget for next financial year to be people-centered.

Mr Gabriel Kimamata, a resident from Izia area in Sumbawanga municipality said he is optimistic that the national budget for 2024/2025 will impact people’s lives by opening up economic opportunities and creating a friendly business-investment environment “I hope the government will present a good budget which is going to touch the lives of ordinary citizens,” added Mr Kimamala.

On his side Mr Manifred Fusi speaking on the employment he said the budget should focus on protecting local industries, which will increase employment in the country.

He added: “If process- ing industries are constructed here (Rukwa) apart from creating more employment, it will produce goods, export them, and subsequently will raise more foreign exchange,” he added .

On her part, Ms Jacqueline Simchimba from Nkasi District said the national budget should liberate Tanzanian women by allocating sufficient fund which should be directed to the implementation of water projects in the precincts.

Simiyu residents are expecting much from the 2024/25 national budget, including availability of teach- ers to fill the existing gaps in primary and secondary schools.

“The government has already done a lot with the construction of school infrastructures Meatu District, Simiyu Region, but availability of teachers remained a big challenge, said Mshikamano Street resident, Mr Philipo Julius. At the same time, he said they do expect the budge to completely fix the long existing power and water woes in the district.

“Water and power ration- ing is a problem that must be addressed. We get water service twice a week, and the precious liquid flows for all only three hours.

The same applies for electricity that regularly goes off,” said Mr Julius. A resident of Morogoro, Juma Abdul said public engagement in budgeting was crucial because the annual budget is typically the strongest statement of the people’s priorities for the community.

“It is important that the community is involved in the development of this document and public involvement can help citizens understand what budgeting entails, and assist policy-makers in better understanding the programmes and services citizens value most.

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