Assessment on the impact of IFMIS on the Procurement process in the public sector (A survey of ministry of finance, works and supply and anticorruption Commission)

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Muwema, Timothy
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University of Zambia
Progressive governments around the world aim at having efficient Public Finance Management in order to efficiently manage resources and maximize on opportunity costs associated with Public Procurement. The Government of Zambia has introduced IFMIS to monitor how ministries, departments and other state agencies spend funds on a real-time basis in order to improve budget implementation. The objectives of IFMIS are to attain transparency, reduce financial leakages and accountability in the way Government resources are being spend. This research thus seeks to find out how the implementation of IFMIS has impacted Public procurement in promoting Transparency, Efficiency, Speed, less financial leakages as a means of paying vendors/customers on behalf of Ministries, departments and other state agencies. Data was collected from seventy-five (75) respondents from the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Works and Supply and the Anti-Corruption Commission. Data was analysed using Social Package and Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20 and Microsoft excel. The study concluded that IFMIS has not enhanced transparency in the public procurement processes because citizens, vendors do not have access to the system. In addition, the information on IFMIS can only be accessed through SAP to those authorised using passwords and usernames. The study also concluded that IFMIS has not reduced financial leakages because procurement processes are still being carried outside the system and are only loaded on the system afterwards. This has made the system reactive rather than proactive in reducing the financial leakages. The study further concluded that IFMIS has not increased efficiency and speed, this is because the system has increased the cost of performing procurement processes twice, that is on the system and on paper. Performing the activities twice has ultimately reduced speed and increased the lead time of fulfilling needs identified by different users. The study recommended that vendors and citizens should have access to the system to enhance transparency. Furthermore, the study recommended for code restructuring of the system to make it more proactive rather than reactive in order to improve budget adherence, reduce misappropriation and misapplication of funds. In conclusion, the study further recommended procurement processes be carried on the system only and eliminate the duplication of work on paper.
Procurement ---public sector , Supply Chain Management , Project ---Management