Yesterday, the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED), commissioned the start of the implementation of the National Electronic Payment Gateway. With the increasing usage of technology to access services, the citizens are often inconvenienced when making payments for the services. This is manifested in the non-seamless mode of payment the citizens are subjected to.
It is against that background, that the Accountant General, in partnership with NITAUganda, is set to implement a Payment Gateway that will enable online payments for all Government services; and as well be utilized by interested private sector business enterprises to receive payments for their supplies, in a bid to promote e-Commerce and financial inclusion in Uganda.
Addressing the pilot entities that will enabled to provide services through the payment gateway, the acting Commissioner, Financial Management Systems, MoFPED, Aiden Rujumba called upon the entities to embrace this new platform. ‘As a Government, we are always looking for technologies that will allow for more transparency and efficiency so as to make the lives of citizens easier in their interaction with Government especially with access to Government services,’ he added.
Steven Kirenga, Marketing & Communications Manager, NITA–U, informed the meeting that the national payment gateway will ensure payment for Government services securely, fast and conveniently. ‘Citizens will soon be able to pay for various Government services online, easily on their phones either through the citizens portal, the mobile phone application or USSD,’ he said.
Some of the benefits expected once the service is available include:
Seamless payment for Government services. A citizen will no longer switch between websites of Ministries and URA when paying for Non-Tax Revenue e.g. Passport fees
Simplified process for making payments for Government services
Reduced transaction costs due to the ability of aggregating payments for different services offered by the same Ministry/entity. E.g. A person will be able to pay for Search fees and company registration fees in a consolidated payment thus saving on transaction fees.
Convenience. Owing to the challenges related to transacting with cash, the National Payment Gateway will ensure transaction in a secure environment.
The payment service will initially be available with the following entities:
Uganda Revenue Authority
Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Authority – Electronic Government Procurement
Ministry of Agriculture – eVoucher service
Uganda Wildlife Authority
Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities
Uganda Wildlife Education Centre
Academic Information Management Systems (AIMS) – University & Tertiary Institutions
Dotsaidia Systems Ltd (Dotshule) – Primary and Secondary Schools
Uganda Heart Institute – Hospital Management Information System
Uganda National Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The Government of Uganda is confident that the use of ICT as an enabler of efficiency across the different ministries, agencies and departments will go a long way in making government services more accessible to the citizens of Uganda.