Gov’t Takes Open Budget Awareness to Communities

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To promote public access to budget information, the Government of Liberia, through the Open Budget Office at Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP), yesterday kicked off the National Budget awareness activities in Montserrado County.

Activities centered around the 2016/2017 Draft National Budget will be taken across the county and are intended to give the public access to budget information and opportunities to participate in the budget process at the national level.

At the official launch of the awareness event at the Dujah Elementary Junior and Senior High School in Barnersville Assistant Director for Budget Development and Dissemination at MFDP, Johnson Williams, said the draft awareness is one of government’s key priorities that are required by law to disseminate relevant information when the budget is submitted to the National Legislature.

Minister Williams said that the one-month awareness exercise will run from June to July 2016. He said the government budget is a plan that identifies “where the money will come from and also states how the government will spend the money on defined activities; and who will be spending that money.”

During the preparation process of the Draft National Budget, there are several stakeholders who usually participate, and they include the National Legislature, Executive Branch, Judiciary and citizens from the 15 counties.

The outreach activity at Dujah Elementary Junior and Senior High School was attended by students, faculty, staff of the school, as well as MFDP personnel.

Recently, upon instructions from President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, and consistent with Section 11(1) of the Public Financial Management (PFM) Act of 2009, the Minister of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP), Boima S. Kamara, has submitted the Draft National Budget for 2016/2017 to the tune of US$555.9 million, comprising of US$495.5 million for Core Domestic Revenue; US$30.2 million as Grants; and US$30.1 million as Contingent Domestic Revenue.

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