The Non-Governmental Gender Organisations’ Coordinating Council (NGOCC) has shared its initial thoughts on the 2024 national budget, which totals K177.9 billion, up 6.3% from the previous year. The NGOCC welcomed the increased allocation, emphasizing its importance for national development.
In a statement released by Anne Mbewe Anamela, Executive Director of NGOCC, the organization expressed concern about reduced funding for the Farmer Input Support Programme (FISP) and noted initiatives in farming blocks and access roads, aiming to benefit women and youth.
The NGOCC praised increased health sector funding but noted that it falls short of the 15% commitment. They appreciated plans for maternity annexes, mini hospitals, and cancer hospitals, urging more midwife recruitment.
While they welcomed higher education funding, the NGOCC highlighted the need for more investment to meet Dakar Declaration commitments. They commended the school feeding program and desk procurement while advocating for increased women’s participation.
The NGOCC supports the CDF increase but called for improved access and gender-specific data. They welcomed capacity assessments and councilor allowance increments.
The organization appreciated the zero-rated band increase but expressed concerns about its sufficiency given high living costs. They noted the reduction in the highest tax band.
The NGOCC calls for resources for the constitution review, gender-responsive budgets, operationalization of the Gender Equity and Equality Act, Ministry of Gender re-establishment, and Anti-GBV Act implementation. They stressed gender equity’s importance for development and the budget’s role in achieving it.