Assessment of security and accessibility to financial records at the Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development
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A study was undertaken to assess security and accessibility to financial records at the Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development (MOFPED). It was centred on the following objectives; To find out the various types of financial records at the Ministry, to find out security threats of financial records at MOFPED, to examine security of financial records at MOFPED, to find out challenges affecting security and accessibility of financial records at MOFPED, to suggest appropriate measures for effective and efficient security and accessibility of financial records at MOFPED. The study adopted a mixed research approach where aspects of quantitative and qualitative research designs were used. Data was collected using interviews, observation and document analysis from four MOFPED staff that were purposively selected for first-hand data collection because the researcher believed that they had trustworthy information on security and accessibility to financial records. It was revealed that the Ministry plays a role to ensure mobilisation of public resources for the entire government. It is further charged to oversee how these resources are accounted for as they target to benefit all Ugandans. It is concerned with matters of achieving fastest rate of economic transformation with the emerging economies and it carries out activities which include ; Prepare annual national budget and medium term expenditure allocations, and others whereas the MOFPED registry engages in various activities like opening up new files, closing files when due, routing files and mails for action, shelving of files, retrieving of files requested, file re-dressing, sorting of files and filing of documents, security grading that is the top secret, secret, confidential. As a result, various categories of records were produced; personnel, administrative, financial, legal, policy and vital records and were stored in boxes, steel cabinets, floor space, office trays, tables and open shelves. The registry had arrangements for handling security classified records and access to the registry was controlled by serving clients from the counter, locking and control of the keys. The engulfing challenges among others were limited registry space, funds and inadequate storage and security equipment. The study recommended that MOFPED should automate and computerize its functions location of files because having e-electronic records management service in place, improves security of records and concluded that the Cabinets containing confidential financial records should be kept locked for security purposes.