Madhesh govt demands extension of payment time

Published On: July 12, 2022 01:00 PM NPT By: Mithilesh Yadav

JANAKPURDHAM, July 12: Madhesh Province’s Finance Minister Sailendra Prasad Shah has reached Kathmandu to meet the Prime Minister with a demand to extend the payment period till the last day of this week. Shah is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba and request him to arrange the payment by July 16.

Finance Minister Shah told Republica, "I will meet the Prime Minister shortly. I am confident that the payment problem will be resolved after meeting him. I understand that the Prime Minister is positive toward the solution of the payment problem at the province and local level.”

Minister Shah said that the last day of payment at the province and local level was Saturday, July 9 and due to the 12-hour server down on that day, the payment could not be made even though many projects were completed.

Minister Shah said that he will request PM Deuba to order the ministry and office concerned to make arrangements for sanctioning the payment till the last day of the fiscal year. 

Earlier, the federal government had been making arrangements for the withdrawal of payment till the last day of July by the decision of the Council of Ministers. However, this time the Office of the Comptroller General and Office of the Auditor General had sent a letter informing the province and local governments that the payment could be withdrawn only by 12 noon on July 10, one week before the end of the fiscal year as per the law.

Accordingly, the payment system of the Madhesh province government was shut down at midnight on July 10. The central government controls the payment system.

The Financial Procedures and Fiscal Accountability Act, on the other hand, does not specify a specific time frame for the withdrawal of payments for a particular fiscal year. However, the rules for implementing the Act have been fixed for the province and local governments on July 10. There is no such binding provision for the central government.

Minister Shah said that he would urge Prime Minister Deuba to make arrangements for immediate withdrawal of payment from the decision of the Council of Ministers till the end of July and to maintain the same arrangement for the coming fiscal year by changing the rules.

The provincial government has spent 64.04 percent of its annual budget in the current fiscal year. Of which, 61 percent is capital expenditure and 67.92 percent is current expenditure. The government's expenditure will increase by five to ten percent after the stuck payment is cleared.


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