State says IFMIS restored, blames disruption on 'teething problems'

President Uhuru Kenyatta (right) is shown how the e-procurement by IFMIS director at the National Treasury Jerome Ochieng in August 2014 during its launch. FILE PHOTO | EVANS HABIL | NMG
President Uhuru Kenyatta (right) is shown how the e-procurement by IFMIS director at the National Treasury Jerome Ochieng during its launch: Government says the system was only pulled down for two days. FILE PHOTO | EVANS HABIL | NMG 

The government's digital payment platform has been restored after a breakdown that affected Kenya's 47 Counties, the State confirmed Tuesday.

The reassurances come a day after County Governors released a statement saying disruption to the Integrated Financial Management Information System (IFMIS) had affected day-to-day business in the devolved units.

ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru attributed the breakdown to teething problems, saying IFMIS was only pulled down for two days.

“As we speak it is up and running...that is why we always have a support system. Let them (Counties) contact us then we will be able to troubleshoot and find out the specific issue,” he said on the sidelines of the 9th ICT summit in Diani, Kwale County.

However, his comments contradict those of the Council of Governors (CoG), who said the system used in processing financial transactions had not worked since April 3.

The county bosses said payments for crucial services including workers’ salaries and development projects had been affected, meaning workers who had not received their March salaries would have to wait longer for their pay.

“Delivery of services to Kenyans cannot and should not be pegged on elections or any event for that matter,” the governors said in a statement yesterday.

However, the CS disputes this, saying last month's salaries were paid.

“It (IFMIS) was only pulled for two days. What date is today? How can you pay salaries on the 10th? They were paid. It was working in March. We only pulled it down recently and for two days,” he insisted.

Billion-shilling upgrade

Treasury last year budgeted for a Sh7.6 billion upgrade to the system over the next two years.

A chunk of the funds was set to go towards annual renewal of Oracle licences as well as hardware support.

US-based tech giant Oracle is the service provider for IFMIS.

Additional reporting by Lynette Mukami