Dodoma. The government has directed local authorities to promote the use of digital channels in their fiscal operations.
Delivering a speech during the opening of an extraordinary congress to elect national leaders of the Association of Local Authorities of Tanzania (Alat), President Samia Suluhu Hassan said the new leaders of the decentralisation lobby should see to it that its members go fiscally digital.
She challenged them to ensure all local authority revenue collections and spending to be done and recorded using new technologies for efficiency and good governance purposes.
“The new Alat leaders should be champions of deployment and use of ICT in local governments operations for effective delivery of services and management of resources,” President Hassan emphasized.
Earlier, NMB Bank Plc chief executive officer Ruth Zaipuna told the gathering that the bank had already put in place the requisite infrastructure to support the endeavour.
She told President Hassan that in three years the government managed to collect revenues to the tune of Sh6 trillion through its digital finance platforms.
“Through our huge investments in digital innovations and virtual service delivery platforms, NMB Bank is now a key stakeholder of the government in revenue collection,” said Ms Zaipuna.
NMB Bank is the lead sponsor of the event.
“During the three years ending June 2021 government revenue worth Sh6 trillion was collected through NMB Bank’s innovative digital systems which we have invested in heavily to put in place,” said Ms Zaipuna.
She said NMB Bank was also a strategic partner of the government in undertaking flagship infrastructure mega projects.
Ms Zaipuna told President Hassan that local authorities have for many years been a strategic business and development partner for the bank.
According to her, most of the bank’s social investments are made in local authorities’ jurisdictions where majority of the targeted beneficiaries live.
Ms Zaipuna said the one per cent of the post-tax profit NMB Bank has been setting aside for philanthropic causes for 10 years now has made life better for many Tanzanians.
She told the over 500 participants of the Alat meeting from 185 city, district and municipal councils that to date the bank’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) investment, which focus on education, health and natural disasters, have amounted to over Sh12 billion.
“Statistically, more than 1,300 schools countrywide have received over 85,000 desks with over 600 health centres getting medical equipment while more than 80,000 Tanzanians have been trained in financial literacy and over one million benefitting from our programmes to help the needy during disasters, including the Covid-19 pandemic,” reads part of her speech.
She said early this month, NMB Bank launched the not-for-profit NMB Foundation to help broaden its social investment efforts and closely serve communities.
The bank also impressed President Hassan with its “Mwendo wa Upepo” marathon initiative to collect Sh1 billion in four years to help treat 240 fistula patients at CCBRT.
Ms Zaipuna said the inaugural race last Saturday surpassed the set annual target of collecting Sh250 million.
“The participation response was so impressive that we exceeded the first year target and collected Sh400 million and all these funds have already been handed over to CCBRT to help treat 100 mothers who we believe will come from various councils,” the NMB Bank chief executive said.