By Staff Writer
Government has said the country can save about $264 million per annum from waste inherited in expenditure if the country was to become digitally fit with an integrated financial system.
Technology and Science Minister Felix Mutati said the key driver to this digital fitness would be to have a common electronic identity for citizens to interact with various government systems.
Mr Mutati said as a result of having this common electronic identity, there would be minimized inconveniences and incidents of fraud because of the multiple numbers that are inherent and carried by citizens.
“You can’t have digital fitness unless you have got a common identity for your citizens as the number one condition. It is a key perimeter for fitness and it also allows the various systems to operate in an integrated manner” Hon Mutati said.
He said at the moment, the systems are operated in a fragmented manner because they cannot communicate the same person across the systems and as a result, huge data has to be moved from one system to the next thereby leading to loses.
The Minister was speaking when he closed the Mastercard, Global Travel Wallet and Government of Zambia digital workshop held in Lusaka.
Mr Mutati said key to the Ministry’s digital strategy is optimization and integration of digital infrastructure as well as having internet as an essential commodity which is a necessity to influence digital entrepreneurship.
And Mr Mutati said in order to reduce compromise of the totality revenue the country needs will require having an integrated system that promotes revenue integrity using the common identity which would minimize abuse of government systems and eliminate redundancy.
Meanwhile, Mastercard Government Engagement Vice President Cuthbert Tembedza said the company is prepared to bring the necessary skills transfer and put its investment to support Zambia’s digitization program.
Mr Tembedza said the company is also committed to use its experience and global exposure to support the government ensure that whatever the company brings speaks to the needs of the country through the partnerships.
Mastercard is a global pioneer in payment innovation and technology.