National
Finance stops cash payments over fraudPublish Date: Nov 19, 2012
Finance stops cash payments over fraud
  • mail
  • img
Maria Kiwanuka, the Minister of Finance and Economic development
.

By Mary Karugaba

The Ministry of Finance has suspended cash payments from Bank of Uganda (BoU) to government ministries and departments.

The move is part of new measures to curb the theft of government funds.

Inside sources in the ministry said cash transactions will only be limited to a maximum of sh20m per month and the rest will be done through electronic fund transfers.

The measure follows reports that the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) used the laxity in the rules and withdrew sh116m per month instead of only sh20m.

The Auditor General’s forensic report on the stolen funds in the Prime Minister’s office indicates that in some cases, the officers withdrew up sh800m per month.

“On September 25, 2010, the Accountant General granted an imprest warrant of up to sh96m monthly. However, it was noted that imprest amounts were drawn over and above the authorised limit in various months in some instances, drawing over sh800m in a single month,” the report indicates.

The permanent secretary to the Treasury, Chris Kassami, last week told the public accounts committee that any financial transfers in Bank of Uganda to ministries’ accounts must be confirmed by the respective permanent secretaries and the telephone conversation recorded.

“To make sure that they don’t deny later, their conversation will also be recorded,” he said.

Kassami said the Government has also solicited the services of the Police to check the Integrated Financial Management System (IFMS) to ensure that all the loopholes are closed.

“The system’s problems have been identified and we are going to do things differently. Such transfers will no longer be done by individuals. The police officers are qualified in system audit and will detect any illegal transaction immediately,” he said.

Kassami warned that there is a problem in the country which needs future redress.

“We are setting institutional measures to correct the mistakes that were made. I have discussed this even with the donors,” he added.

Sources also said the ministry plans to hire a firm to provide security advisory services in order to enhance the security of IFMS to be able to detect security fraud and put mitigating measures.

Pension and salary payment, according to the sources, will be fully migrated to the Integrated Personnel Payroll System by December.

According to the audit report, sh14b was disguised as salary and transferred from one account to another within Bank of Uganda.

The United Kingdom, Ireland, Norway and Denmark have suspended financial support to the Government over alleged theft of money meant for northern Uganda.

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Handshakes not hygienic, say scientists
Fist bumps are more hygienic than handshakes and drastically reduce the risk of spreading infectious diseases, researchers in Britain have found....
Uganda pilgrims return from Israel
A group of 19 Ugandans which left for the biblical promised land, Canan for a holy tour has returned. The group comprising of Christians and Muslims left for Israel on July 13....
Busoga parents warned against child marriages
Busoga parents have been warned against marrying off under age girls. The vice deprives them of their bright future, state minister for gender, Rukia Nakadama has said....
Police arrest suspicious traditional healers
The Police in Mityana are holding four people suspected to be fake traditional healers. The suspects were held from Kabuwambo village, in Busimbi Sub county Mityana district...
Universities told to stop duplicating courses
Kamanda Bataringaya, the state minister for primary education, punched more holes in the country’s higher institutions of learning when he said they were duplicating courses...
38 foreigners arrested, face deportation
THE Department of Inspection and Legal Services, Ministry of Internal Affairs has arrested 38 foreigners, including traders illegally operating their businesses in Uganda...
Should voters be given poer to recall their MPs?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter