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eCitizen founder breaks down what happens to school fees paid via the platform

James Ayugi the founder of eCitizen has explained how the money paid via the platform flows and ends up in the school's bank account

James Ayugi the founder of eCitizen

President William Ruto is pushing for the implementation of the payment of school fees through the eCitizen platform.

However, the courts suspended the directive by the Ministry of Education until April 17, when the case challenging the new order will be heard.

This initiative, first announced by Basic Education Principal Secretary Belio Kipsang, is part of a broader effort to streamline government services and enhance service delivery through technology.

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James Ayugi, the founder of eCitizen, has now provided an insightful explanation of how the system ensures transparency and efficiency in the payment of school fees.

At its core, the system requires the registration of every school and its bank account to eliminate ghost schools and students, a common issue that has plagued the education sector.

Each school, registered with the Ministry of Education, is assigned a unique account. Similarly, every student is given a student identification number, tying them to their respective schools.

This setup allows for real-time tracking of fee payments, ensuring that when fees are paid, the information is immediately accessible to the schools.

The eCitizen platform acts as a holding and tracking mechanism, providing a transparent record of the funds collected by each school.

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Ayugi revealed that once a parent has paid school fees, the government will tell the school that it has received this money and then at the end of the day the money will be sent to that school’s bank account.

“This money still goes to schools to fund operations as per the law because they are the only people who are allowed to collect and spend it but also the government funds these schools, so you have scenarios where schools claim to have no money yet they are collecting school fees because there is no visibility.

“When you realize that you're dealing with thousands of schools, it is very difficult to keep track of what's happening manually, but in real time you have these statistics,” Ayugi said.

This level of oversight is crucial in preventing the unauthorized imposition of extra fees by schools, a practice that has burdened parents unnecessarily.

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He also explained that currently, the government has no way of knowing how much each school collects for school fees.

The system's digitalization aims to make outdated manual tracking and accountability issues a thing of the past.

By centralizing the flow of information and funds, the government and the National Treasury gain real-time visibility into the financial operations of all schools.

This visibility is key to preventing fraud and ensuring that schools receive the correct amount of government funding based on their actual student population.

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The transition to eCitizen for school fee payments aligns with President Ruto's broader vision for a digital-first government, aimed at reducing corruption and improving service delivery across the board.

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