The government is decentralizing the management of public finances

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The Chronicle

Mthabisi Tshuma, business journalist
The management of public funds will soon be decentralized to all districts of the country as part of efforts to promote increased development at the local level.

The decentralization process saw the establishment of 63 Public Financial Management System (PFMS) kiosks scattered across the country.

Of these, 43 kiosks are now operational, 10 of which were officially commissioned by the Minister of Information and Communication Technology, Posts and Courier Services, Dr Jenfan Muswere and his Deputy, Dingumuzi Phuti over the past few weeks.

In a recent interview, the Director of Infrastructure Development and Management at the Ministry, Mr. Newman Nyamhuri, said that the PFMS kiosks will ensure efficient management of public funds.

“The PFMS is a public financial management system derived from the Public Financial Management Act in the management of public resources.

“The system is used in the management of public funds and includes the financial module, the sales and distribution module, the material management module, the customer relationship management and the grant management module,” said Mr. Nyamhuri.

He said the kiosks model was used in the use and management of the national budget.

“The PFMS system has a network that extends to the 10 provincial capitals of the country and was not present in all the districts of the country, but was only present in all the district hospitals for the management module subsidies,” Mr. Nyamhuri said.

“The rest of all district MDAs (departments and agencies of ministries) had no connectivity so they had to go to provincial capitals for budget utilization and other related online transactions.”

Chiredzi’s PFMS kiosk (photo by Mthabisi Tshuma)

The official said this has resulted in loss of source documents, delays in reconciliations and to some extent loss of revenue as district MDAs will resort to manual operations that allow thefts into the system.

“With these continuing problems, this gave birth to the PFMS Kiosks. The PFMS District Kiosks are 63 in number, one for each district in the country located at the DA office.

“Having the PFMS district kiosks located in the DA office was a deliberate strategic decision. The DA is the control center for all district offices and most MDAs are concentrated in the DA office.

“Also, in terms of ownership, it will not be owned by one single institution,” Mr Nyamhuri said.

– @mthabisi_mthire

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