The government spent higher amounts funding operations of the Defence and War Veterans ministry during the first half of the year, compared to expenditures committed to crucial sectors, such as health care, data released by the Ministry of Finance has revealed.
Finance and Economic Development Minister Mthuli Ncube’s Mid-Term Budget Review presented on Thursday showed that the amount of money channelled towards defence was higher than the funds that were deployed to fighting the coronavirus.
The data showed that the Defence and War Veterans Ministry had already expended ZW$14,5 billion (US$169,4 million) during the first half of the year, which represents 61% of its annual vote totalling ZW$23,8 billion (US$278 million).
In contrast, the Ministry of Health and Child Care spent ZW$9,4 billion (US$109,8 million) during the same period, out of the ZW$54 billion (US$630,8 million) 2021 budget allocation.
Further, the Defence and War Veterans Ministry expenditure was way above the national average of expenditures.
The Office of the President and Cabinet, whose annual budget is ZW$14,2 billion (US$165,8 million), had utilised ZW$8 billion (US$93,4 million) during the first half of the year.
This is just ZW$4 billion (US$46,7 million) below the ZW$9,4 billion (US$109,8 million) spent on health and child care during the same period.