New Electronic Expenditure Management System for Sierra Leone government ministries

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.

6 Comments

  1. A new electronic expenditure management system for government ministries is a great idea being implemented at the wrong time – a time when our country is strapped for cash,a critical moment in our history,when the most urgent priorities,countless in number,badly need our careful attention. Again,if this system is going to be linked directly to the dubious Ministry of Finance, with JJ Saffa at the helm of our financial affairs,then it is a failed project already – an effort totally wasted,it is bound to become…might as well just forget about it. For such authority, and responsibility to be placed in his corrupt tainted hands,is a disaster in the making already.

    Mr Saffa should be compelled to give an honest,detailed account on how he overspent his ministerial budget by mind blowing countless billions of leones. Listen, I said, “Overspent” just to be polite,but the correct word I should have explicitly used should be,how many billions,did he “Steal” and get away with. (lol) I beg to differ – Mr Saffa doesn’t deserve the honor of being our nation’s Finance Minister,or even an ordinary monthly bookkeeper in any public office. His questionable utterances in the past should be the clearest warnings to us that he is nothing but a tribalistic,inept,greedy-minded
    Freeloader,milking,and ripping off the system.

    But Great Sayedna,answer me – why is this indecisive President making so many silly mistakes? Well, Mistakes can be made in governance,they are allowable,but to let them grow iron claws,and fangs that bite through unchecked,gross ineptitude is another matter altogether.(lol)

    Our Country cannot afford to hastily implement this e system right now – these things should only be done after being carefully,and properly tested,examined,and scrutinized.What’s the point exactly,for a small country like our own,to be trying to duplicate the efforts,and advancements of wealthier nations like France,United States,and Britain.

    A Vulture with a broken wing should never foolishly attempt to jump indiscriminately off a cliff,because it has seen an eagle do it once before,with the greatest of ease,neither can a slow crawling caterpillar become a fearsome dragon overnight,it must first become a colorful majestic,butterfly,then all other things will be made possible.Identifying Priorities is the first,and crucial step to be taken when our desire is to ascend towards unreachable heights of sustainable progress,and success in governance.

    Our main aims should not be to ascend speedily towards the eternal heavens in haste,to gaze in amazement at stars,but rather we must cherish,and appreciate life,and the joys,and beauties,existence has cunningly hidden in a gentle smile,in crawling like infants,with laughter,honesty,and sincerity towards our loftiest ideals,and goals….Rising Sun Will Rise Again

  2. Fantastic stuff which no one will dispute. The only problem I have with it is this – Has this administration made any plans in setting up a digital forensics department and laboratory within the police department, to investigate and clean up any corruption with the electronic records if tampered with?

    You can’t just ask the ACC to go and investigate malpractice or forgery within an e-expenditure management system. You need people with the expertise and the appropriate tools, equipment and environment to carry out such investigations. Think about that Mr. President. With e-governance in sight, it is more than ever necessary for us to make our Police Force independent, give them the tools they need, encourage them to combat not only cyber warfare but, unscrupulous officials who would try to hijack this system for their selfish benefits.

    The ACC should be part of the Police Force in my view. Just imagine a situation where some rogue official, minister, vote controller etc, abandoned his/her post with the password to the PC. Or let’s say a new government takes over whereby the system has been sabotaged by the former government. Who is going to investigate the situation? The answer is no one. All the rogues would have gone with their passwords.

    Disagree with responsible reasons if you care. Recently, the ACC could not carry out an investigation because, the rogue official abandoned the post with the password. Correct me if I am wrong. Can you imagine? Again, think about that Mr. President. God bless this new system and may God prevent it from rogue saboteurs.

  3. Good day to all. I realized on this forum that we get a lot of comments when there is some negative issues in our country. The likes of Saidu Conteh, Matturi, Alimany Turay, Young4na and others will be fast to comment when there is a negative issue. Though I appreciate their comments with a lot of intel in their anaysis but yet still it’s one sided. Where is the patriotism when every body is looking at issues through their political lens. For instance my brother Mr Conteh on APC, Mr Matturi on Sam, Mr young4na for APC and Mr Bilal on SLPP. However no bad feelings, still appreciate your comments which are warmly appreciated and welcome with open hands.

    • Mr. Tucker, it appears you over-sighted my comments below, I commented way ahead of you my brother, please let’s make use of due diligence before reaching into conclusions next time. As far as I am concerned, I owe no allegiance to none but mama Salone, so I will always criticize when necessary and applaud with it deems fit. Any one is free to label me anyhow, but nothing will change my personality. While most of us reside now in the diaspora, Salone remain our only cherished home, so I will never put any party above my beloved nation.

  4. This new electronic system is a great initiative. Nevertheless, I want to assume that the innovation team and Business Analyst took into consideration certain risks that are normally attributed to such investments, such as the continous availability of electricity supply to all user’s facilities, robust security apparatus, reliable and dependable internet connection, trained and experienced staff to operate and manage this specialized system.

    Hats off to the President and team for launching this innovative strategic Framework.

    • Absolutely an applaudable initiative, however, like your rightly pointed out, time will tell if this new scheme will be effectively implemented taking into account the numerous constraints you have highlighted.

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