Parliament yesterday approved a K17.5 billion allocation to the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development despite queries on K300 million earmarked for the rehabilitation of offices.
The members of Parliament (MPs) also queried K200 million meant for a clinic at Capital Hill, saying previous budgets had similar allocations although no progress has been registered.
The MPs also wanted to know why the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development allocated a huge sum of money for rehabilitation of offices at Capital Hill without specifying the buildings that would benefit.
Rumphi East MP Kamlepo Kalua (People’s Party-PP) urged the Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development Goodall Gondwe to disclose that the K300 million will be used to rehabilitate Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development offices which were burnt in February this year.
“There is a provision of K300 million to Capital Hill, why can’t you just say it is going to the Ministry of Agriculture [offices]? Should we assume that the fire at the ministry was that bad that the office needs K300 million to rehabilitate? I would like to know the cost of rehabilitating that office,” he said.
In his response, Gondwe said the K300 million was for paintings and rehabilitation of various offices at Capita Hill, not only Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development offices.
“Every 10 years or so, we do painting at Capital Hill. It is not only the Ministry of Agriculture where that money is going, and to answer on the specific allocation, I don’t know how much is going to the Ministry of Agriculture,” he said.
Minister of Health Peter Kumpalume assured the members that the clinic at Capital Hill was about to be completed.