Accra, Oct. 16, GNA - The Controller and Accountant General’s Department (CAGD) on Monday said it is working towards extending the Ghana Integrated Financial Management System (GIFMIS) to cover the remaining 156 metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) across the country.
Mr Eugene Ofosuhene, the Controller and Accountant General, said this followed the successes chalked in the implementation of the GIFMIS Project in 60 MMDAs.
He said as a matter of fact important lessons had been learnt, so far, in the implementation processes, which were being effected during subsequent deployment to the remaining 156 MMDAs across the country.
Speaking in Accra at a GIFMIS stakeholders’ forum, Mr Ofosuhene said the implementation of GIFMIS, throughout the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and MMDAs in the country fell in line with the Public Financial Management Act 621 (2016).
He said it would go a long way to reducing external queries and render the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament (PAC) redundant as regards public financial controls and management.
“The CAGD has never been enthused with the spectacle of heads of finance and accountants being hauled to the PAC with their administrative and political heads to answer queries on financial malpractices and it is in this frame that GIFMIS is being rolled out to stem this negative tide and to protect public purse.
“I would like to emphasise that prudent management of public funds is just as important as the efficient delivery of services to the public and I entreat you to brace up for the success of the system,” he said.
Mr Ofosuhene said similar stakeholders’ forums had been held in Kumasi for the Middle-belt, comprising the Brong Ahafo, Eastern and Ashanti regions, and that for the three regions of the north was held in Tamale.
He said GIFMIS was a flagship project of the CAGD and the Ministry of Finance, which remained one of the biggest initiatives by government for the establishment of an integrated ICT-based Public Finance Management Information System across MDA’s and MMDA’s to improve efficiency, comprehensiveness and transparency in the management of public funds.
Mr Ofosuhene said the clarion call in all developing countries, over the years and in Africa in particular, had been the need to wage war against corruption, especially in the public sector.
“I dare say that the strict adherence of the tenets of GIFMIS will lead to the elimination of corruption in the MDAs and MMDAs in Ghana,” he said.
Mr Ishmael Ashitey, the Greater Accra Regional Minister, said with GIFMIS now in place the issue of delaying financial reporting and transaction processes in the public sector, due to over reliance on manual processes and lack of reliable data, would all be an issue of the past.
Dr Nana Ato Arthur, the Head of Local Government Service, said: “GIFMIS, when fully implemented, would address the problems concerning the lack of integration between budget preparation and execution systems, inadequate budgetary controls, and lack of interface between the Public Financial Management (PFM) systems across MDAs and MMDAs.
Nana Agyekum Dwamena, the Head of Civil Service, noted that GIFMIS was one of the huge initiatives, which was improving on the scope of the public service in Ghana.
“It is mandated to address issues of transparency, accountability, enhance human resource management, improve reporting and ensuring that our financial management systems are up and running,” he said.
GIFMIS is an integrated computerised PFM system that facilitates budget preparation and execution, accounting and financial reporting, cash, assets, human resource and payroll management.
The GIFMIS Project is under Component Two of the PFM Reforms Project, which aims at supporting the design, development, implication and coverage financial management and control.
The GIFMIS management of public funds started in 2012 after stakeholders’ meeting was held to discuss and agree on the road map.
The Accra forum was, therefore, meant to engage key stakeholders to discuss the roadmap and major activities to ensure its smooth implementation.