Sierra Leone Telegraph: 18 January 2020:
Government ministries and departments will soon have a new national integrated IT system that links all government ministries and departments with the ministry of finance, to help the government achieve efficiency, effectiveness and economy in spending. This new system should also help reduce corruption.
The Ministry of Finance in collaboration with the Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation (DSTI) are reported to have been working on the new computerised system known as Electronic Expenditure Management System (EEMS).
This web-based system which will streamline and automate the end-to-end processing of payments in the public service, from the paper-based PETS forms and vouchers, is in line with the National Innovation and Digital Strategy (NIDS) that was launched by President Julius Maada Bio in Freetown last year.
In rolling out the EEMS, the Ministry of Finance in collaboration with the Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation (DSTI) on Wednesday, 15th January 2020, trained cabinet Ministers and Deputies on the use of the Electronics Public Expenditure Tracking Survey (E-PETS) at the Miatta Conference Hall in Freetown.
After this initial training, the joint team from DSTI and MoF will be conducting training for all users across ministries and department to ensure ease of utilizing the system.
The Business Analyst at the Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation – Madam Binta Diop, said the new approach to processing PETS forms and vouchers has been extensively reviewed and tested, so as to reduce processing time for payment and increase user convenience, improve tracking and enhance transparency in public sector transactions.
She said that some of the key benefits of the new system will include: helping vote controllers and other relevant stakeholders to track their forms in real time – both internally within their Ministries, Departments and Agencies – and in the Ministry of Finance.
The new app will make it easier for vote controllers to approve forms, and also make auditing purposes much easier, Binta Diop said.
The MoF and DSTI team are working on the roll out of the EEMS to MDAs, including Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS) users. The rolling out phase is expected to be completed by 1st April this year.