Parliament Approves K1.149 Trillion National Budget

Malawi Parliament has approved the K1.149 trillion 2016/17 national budget which is set to bite poor Malawians hard through taxes.

A total of K8.6 billion has been added to the budget through a supplementary Order Paper, on the initial K1.141 trillion which Minister of Finance Goodall Gondwe had presented to the august House a month ago.

Among others, government is expected to start taxing poor Malawians on milk and other baked confectioneries including bread.

Earlier on Members of Parliament had rejected the proposed allocation to National Local Government Finance Committee, which would have seen the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) being increased from K12 million to K15 million.

MPs want the CDF to be increased from K12 million to K25 million, however, Minister of Finance, Goodall Gondwe, offered them K15 million.

First Deputy Speaker Esther Mcheka Chilenje was forced to call for a division vote in which each MP was voting individually to determine if the government’s offer was accepted or rejected.

The voting results revealed that the proposal has been rejected with 71 MPs voting against the proposal and 49 voted in favor of it.

70 MPs were absent from Parliament at the time of voting.

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