UNICEF supports training of parliamentarians on child-sensitive programme budget
The training, which targeted deputies and senators who are members of the committee in charge of finance, is part of the implementation of the programme budget reform based on performance budgeting
The Parliament of Burundi, through its finance committees and support staff, with the support of UNICEF Burundi, organized a capacity-building workshop for parliamentarians on the implementation of child-sensitive programme budgets, particularly in the social sectors. The training also focused on the performance audit of public action.
The objective of the workshop was to provide MPs, senators and support staff with tools to analyse and vote on the state budget from a child-friendly perspective. In concrete terms, it was a question of highlighting the tools for analyzing and voting on the state budget according to programme budgeting that takes into account the well-being of children. It was also the occasion to reflect on the transition from the average budget to the programme budget, and of putting in place a finance law based on the programming of activities that include the concerns of children.
The training also aimed to enable parliamentarians to contribute to the improvement of the control of government action centered on the audit of performance in the implementation of the programme budget for the benefit of citizens in general, and children in particular. The capacities of parliamentarians were also to be strengthened in the analysis and evaluation of annual performance plans and annual performance reports, with a focus on sectors affecting children.
The presentations focused on the legislative and regulatory framework of programme-based budgeting, with a focus on the social sectors, and the shift from resource-based to programme-based budgeting, taking into account the needs of the child. Exchanges were then held on the analysis of the programme budget, its successes and challenges, and on the situation of public accounts and performance audit tools.
"We hope that this session will contribute to the improvement of the programme budget analysis and voting process," said Albert Ewodo Ekani, head of UNICEF's Social Policy and Advocacy Section.
For the Hon. Fabrice Nkurunziza, Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Burundian Senate, the training aims at budget transparency and good economic governance leading to good management of public affairs, taking into account the concerns of children. "We remain confident that this workshop (...) will enable representatives of the people to strengthen their culture of accountability," he said.
At the end of the session, a series of recommendations were made. The participants expressed the wish that the Ministry of Finance, Budget and Economic Planning develop a system of planning and operational monitoring and evaluation for growth-generating investments, such as agriculture, energy and mining, trade, with a particular emphasis on social sectors such as education, health, social protection, etc. They also drew attention to the need to develop a capacity building plan on the implementation and operationalization of the programme budget with a particular focus on the social sectors.
It was also recommended that the Ministry of Finance reflect on strategies to increase domestic revenue through the digitalization of taxation and the introduction of the electronic machine, to draw up a roadmap, with all the components, for the effective implementation of programme budgets, and to strengthen the performance audit carried out by the Court of Auditors, etc.
In order to ensure that the needs of children are taken into account in programme budgets, UNICEF is engaged in the development of public finance management tools, the definition of budget programmes and capacity building of social sector actors.