NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 25 – The Council of Governors has refuted claims by the Treasury that inability by counties to use the Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS) has delayed the disbursement of cash.
According to the Council’s Finance, Planning and Economic Affairs Committee Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya, counties have in the past engaged the National Treasury on serious constraints they face arising out of the malfunctioning of the IFMIS system.
In a statement, Oparanya stated that as a result there are irregular as well as delayed disbursements of funds to counties.
“As the Chairman of Finance at the Council of Governors, I would like to correct the impression created through recent publications in the local dailies by the National Treasury on the status of fiscal transfers that County Governments have failed to meet their financial management obligations,” he said.
The Governors are complaining they don’t get cash on time because IFMS malfunctions at crucial times, but the National Treasury is on the other hand blaming county bosses for the financial constraints their regions are facing.
“The statement which was issued without due consultation is both inaccurate and in bad faith. Counties have in the past engaged the National Treasury on serious constraints they face arising out of the malfunctioning of the IFMIS system as well as irregular and delayed disbursements,” he said.
“This is the real problem that the National Treasury needs to address in order to streamline the flow of funds to county governments. Besides, the National Treasury must ensure urgent strengthening of IFMIS access security.”
The Kakamega Governor accused the Finance Ministry of acting in bad faith, accusing it of giving a deaf ear to their complaints on the flaws of IFMIS.
“It is ironical the statement showing Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) cash balances for all counties as at January 18 comes immediately after the ministry disbursed November 2016 funds to counties. This is clearly a case of late disbursement and not low budget absorption by county governments,” he stated. ” It is therefore malicious and with bad intent for the National Treasury to allege that counties have failed to absorb their allocations.”
The IFMIS system has been blamed for the loss of money in county accounts, with claims that it is easily manipulated.