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Enroll councils to govt accounting system: Minister

MINISTER for Finance and Planning, Dr Philip Mpango, has instructed officials in the financial information systems management unit in his ministry to enrol the Government Accounting System (MUSE) in all councils in the country.

He issued the directives during the just ended Nanenane Agricultural exhibition while touring the ministry pavilion at Nyakabindi grounds in Bariadi district in Simiyu region.

Dr Mpango said there are major weaknesses in local authorities, where some of them are facing issues of embezzlement, implementing projects where the government does not get value for money.

“We want to ensure discipline in public spending; therefore I want you to visit the councils to see what they are doing to help the government get value for money in all projects. It is also crucial to enrol MUSE in all councils to end such problems,” he said.

MUSE was launched in July 2019 by the ministry to manage government spending from budget expenditure where it helps to control expenditure that is outside the relevant budget. Through the system, every institution or council will be monitored whenever they take money for various purposes in their areas.

He further said another area with weaknesses is Tanzania Electrical, Mechanical and Electronics Services Agency (TEMESA), where they charge exorbitant prices for government vehicle maintenance and purchase of spare parts.

“It is high time you also come up with a system like MUSE and others to control it, because this area is very important to cut spending,” he explained.

The Director of Financial Information Systems Management in the ministry, Mr John Sausi told  the ‘Daily News’ that currently, MUSE was operational in the central government and plans are underway to enrol it to the council from September 2020 to be connected to the council.

“The system controls the budget and cash flow of every government institution or council. We have already integrated this system with that of Tanzanian National e-Procurement System (TANePS), and we have seen success, especially with items that were bought at very high prices as opposed to the budget,” said Mr Sausi.

Speaking to the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) officials, Dr Mpango advised them to find better ways to control the issue of theft in the council, where he said the systems should help see value for money.

He also advised them to make sure they provide answers to some of the challenges and not just point out shortcomings in their inspection reports, but look at how they can link these systems.

PPRA Acting Director of Legal and Public Affairs, Ms Winifrida Sanga said they will carry out their duties as directed by the minister.

In implementing the Revenue and Expenditure policies aimed at strengthening domestic revenue collection and ensuring discipline in public spending, the government has developed and strengthened several financial management systems, including the Government e-Payment Gateway System (GePGs), Electronic Fiscal Device Management System (EFDMS), Tanzania Customs Integrated System (TANCIS).

Others are MUSE, Government Assets Management Information System (GAMIS), Government Salary Payment Platform (GSPP), TANePS and the Treasury Single Account (TSA).

THE government has embarked on ...

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Author: HILDA MHAGAMA in Simiyu

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