Biti says Mthuli Ncube did not present a supplementary budget but a brand new budget


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Citizens Coalition for Change vice0president Tendai Biti told Parliament yesterday that Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube did not present a supplementary budget last month but a brand new budget because he was asking for a 100% increase on the original budget.

Speaking during the debate on Ncube’s supplementary budget present last month, Biti said in a supplementary budget the increase should be 10 or 15% not 100%.

“A supplementary budget is an increase, 10%; 15%, you can call it a supplementary budget but when you have a 100% increase on the original budget, it cannot be a supplementary budget.  This is a brand new budget; a budget that is now raising expenditure by 100% to $1.9 trillion,” Biti said.

“In a country such as Zimbabwe, because we have been there before, in 2006, 2007 and 2008, once you begin to budget in trillions, you must know you have lost it.  You must know that you have now become an innocent by-stander to the economy.  You must know that you are no longer in charge of the economy.

“Unfortunately, that is the predicament that my good friend, the Minister of Finance finds himself in.  The Minister of Finance brought a budget in November, 2021.  That budget was based on certain underlying assumptions that were made.  Those underlying assumptions were the following:

“Number one, that we will have a predictable exchange rate.  Number two, that inflation will be stable. Number three, that we will have a decent rain season.  Number four, that there will be growth rate of at least 6%.  The concern is that the underlying assumptions made by the Minister were so far off the mark that hardly more than six months later, he has had to come to this august House to ask for a 100% increase in his budget.”

Full contribution:

HON. BITI: Thank you Madam Speaker Ma’am.  It is my privilege to join the debate on the Supplementary Budget that was brought in by the Minister of Finance on 27th July, 2022.  Madam Speaker, even though you are calling it supplementary budget, it cannot be a supplementary budget.  It is in fact a brand new budget.  A supplementary budget is an increase, 10%; 15%, you can call it a supplementary budget but when you have a 100% increase on the original budget, it cannot be a supplementary budget.  This is a brand new budget; a budget that is now raising expenditure by 100% to $1.9 trillion.

In a country such as Zimbabwe, because we have been there before, in 2006, 2007 and 2008, once you begin to budget in trillions, you must know you have lost it.  You must know that you have now become an innocent by-stander to the economy.  You must know that you are no longer in charge of the economy.  Unfortunately, that is the predicament that my good friend, the Minister of Finance finds himself in.  The Minister of Finance brought a budget in November, 2021.  That budget was based on certain underlying assumptions that were made.  Those underlying assumptions were the following:

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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