In an effort to control the travel expenditure of the government and public officials, the Ghanaian Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has launched an electronic travel card.
The card is designed to regulate and control waste and misappropriation of funds by travelling officials through a cashless disbursement of travel allowances and other payments for local and foreign trips by officials.
According to Modern Ghana, the introduction of the card means that public officials will no more be provided with physical cash for their imprest when they are travelling for state duties.
According to Dr. Bawumia, “Since Independence, public officials are provided cash for their imprest when they travel. This system has many associated problems including the risks of carrying cash, fraud in the disbursement of imprest, the increasing use of cashless payment channels in many jurisdictions, ineffective monitoring and controls, etc.
He said public officials will henceforth be issued with the e-Travel card with their per diem for travel and imprest automatically uploaded on the card for use.
The Vice President explained that the card among other things is expected to eliminate the risk of carrying cash while travelling, ensure transparency and ease of accountability, timely retirement of accountable imprest and improve monitoring and controls of budgetary allocations for official travels to avoid overspending.
In a Facebook post to announce its launch, Dr. Bawumia strongly believe “the era of cash for travel in the public sector will soon be over, bringing further transparency and accountability in the use of public funds.”