Discrepancies in KP’s budget

July 15, 2014 - 12:00:00 am

ISLAMABAD: Glaring discrepancies have been found in the documents of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) budget for the fiscal 2014-15, which has been approved by the Provincial Assembly, it was learnt yesterday.

Some officials described these inconsistencies as figure fudging while others said the gross variations were the result of incompetence and no oversight.

The white paper, the nontechnical description of the salient features of KP budget, which was printed on June 14, and accounts books do not match in certain respects. Actual utilisation of funds took place till June 23 after which the accounts books were strictly closed.

The white paper (pages 67 and 68) claims 97 percent overall utilisation of funds for sectoral allocations of local resources in the Annual Development Programme and revised allocation after re-appropriation. But the accounts closed as of June 23, the end of fiscal year, put this allocation at 58.9 percent. There is also a huge discrepancy in Elementary and School Education (E and SE) head.

The white paper claims 98.9 percent utilisation against budget allocation while the accounts put it at 76.7 percent. Interestingly, the KP government had an education emergency this year.

The provincial budget had originally earmarked to the E and SE a sum of $135bn whereas it had $134bn as the revised allocation, according to the white paper.

Likewise, the law and justice head in the white paper showed 98.1 percent utilisation as of June 23 while it was actually 54.9 percent as per the accounts. 

The law and order was originally allotted a sum of $136bn, which was brought down to $133bn. The white paper says it is an endeavour to give meanings and substance to the figures in the budget.

It attempts to summarise and unfold the mysteries hidden under budgetary classifications besides explaining the rationale for various provisions in the budget estimates.

It hoped that the insight provided by it would enable the reader to formulate an informed and independent opinion about the intent, benefits and accuracy of various projections in the budget estimates.

The paper portrays a comprehensive depiction of the KP government’s finances covering all major areas, including current revenue receipts and expenditures, capital receipts and expenditures, development budget, funds management, local government finances, debt management and major public financial management reforms.