By Momodou Jarju
The National Assembly Select Committee on Education, Training and ICT has queried the intended approach of the Gambia Technical Training Institute (GTTI), in enhancing its manual information system to a digitalized one.
The external auditors of GTTI in their management letter urged the tertiary institution’s management to consider automating their information system to enhance their efficacy and efficiency.
Augustus Prom, the external auditors, said upon review of the system in place, it was found that only the Finance Unit has an accounting software; that the remaining systems are manual which has an impact on the Finance and Management of the Institute. They added this creates the excess time needed to produce their reports.
On its implications, the external auditors said this will expose the institute to a possible loss of revenue due to the manual process involved in the keeping information and can lead to errors going undetected in monitoring the status of each student’s fees.
During the review and consideration of the activity report and financial statements for the year under review 2016, officials of the GTTI said they are making efforts to digitalize their information systems and even looking for expert help outside the country, to remedy the situation.
The Director General of GTTI Edward C Mansa, acknowledged challenges faced by the institute; that they have engaged partners to update the management’s information system especially with the registration of students; that this is causing some setbacks in the reconciliation of students’ fees data.
Mansa said an institution from Holland came and looked at the system and they are trying to roll it out.
Alhagie Mbow, the National Assembly Member for Upper Saloum and vice chairperson of the committee, said if they should wait for the Ministry to hire experts from outside the country, it may delay the process; that the process of setting up an information system for students’ registration is simple.
“So really you do not need any expert service for this from outside the country,” he said.
Mbow who is also a member of the Finance and Public Accounts Committee (FPAC) of the National Assembly, said there are Companies in the country that can develop a digitalized information system for the Institute; adding it is just a matter for the GTTI management to contact the Company which will not cost more than a hundred thousand dalasi.
Meanwhile, the select committee is yet to adopt the activity report and financial statement of the GTTI management for the year ended 2016 after review and observations. The committee is yet to receive two documents which should constitute part of the institution’s submission. And a date of its adoption would be communicated to the management of the GTTI.