Parliament yesterday passed the 1.4 trillion kwacha 2018/2019 national budget.
The budget was initially pegged at K1.504 trillion but earlier this week Minister of Finance and Economic Planning Goodall Gondwe announced that it has been cut by K50 billion in order to reduce the budget deficit.
“This entails a reduction of the deficit inclusive grants or the overall balance by about K50.0 billion to 3.8 percent of GDP instead of an earlier budgetary deficit of 4.5 percent of GDP inclusive of grants,” he said.
On Friday before the budget was passed, Members of Parliament were still pushing Gondwe to increase the legislators’ salaries by 10 percent and allow them to be purchasing vehicles duty free.
This led to suspension of proceedings but Leader of the House Kondwani Nankhumwa later announced that the issues had been resolved after discussions.
After the budget was passed, Leader of Opposition Lazarus Chakwera hailed opposition MPs for scrutinising the allocations.
On Monday, parliamentarians will start debating bills.