CoG to petition Senate over Treasury ‘laxity’ to probe Ifmis
Safeguards must be provided to prevent fraud. PIN numbers to access the accounts should also be shared. Why are they centralised? – Governor Peter Munya
Council of Governors chairman Peter Munya yesterday accused a select committee headed by Treasury CS Henry Rotich of laxity in auditing and reviewing how the Ifmis was developed.
He appeared before the Senate’s Public Accounts and Investment committee yesterday. Munya said the CoG will file a petition in the Senate seeking to compel the Treasury to audit the Ifmis, saying the system has many shortcomings which need to be addressed.
He said the CoG will file the petition on Friday, which will be handled by Senate’s Finance Committee.
“The issues being raised by governors are genuine. There were inadequate preparations when the system was adopted. Treasury has not adequately handled the issues,” Munya said.
He said the sub-committee formed to review and audit the Ifmis has only met twice and is yet to submit a report with recommendations.
Munya questioned why up to 10 modules of Ifmis – including one on generating financial statements – are yet to be activated.
He said the system should be strengthened to curb the rising cases of fraud, adding that most cases of fraud take place using accounts held at the Central Bank.
“Safeguards must be provided to prevent fraud. PIN numbers to access the accounts should also be shared. Why are they centralised? The keys are never kept by one person. Ifmis at the moment is prone to fraud,” Munya said.
He defended the 47 county bosses, saying they should not be told to account for money stolen through Ifmis. Munya said governors neither have PINs nor the authority to incur expenditure.
Munya warned that if the system is not properly secured, the country will sink into a financial shutdown and money meant for services “will be stolen”.
On Monday, Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua told the same committee the problems experienced through Ifmis payments have caused huge pending bills.
“Ifmis is run by people, by human beings, and it is shut by human beings. If it is shut in Nairobi, you can scream all you can ... The late disbursement of money to the counties has been compounded by challenges of the Ifmis. When we have money in our accounts to pay bills, the system is down,” he said.
The CoG has linked the government to recent cases of loss of money through the Ifmis.
On Tuesday last week, Munya alleged the government was working with a criminal gang to “siphon” money through the system.
Meru Governor Peter Munya with EALA MPs after appearing before the Senate Public Accounts and Investments Committee