President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says the country has been saved the amount of GHC443 million following Finance Ministry's suspension of salary payment to some 26,589 workers in April, 2017.
He said the comprehensive payroll audit conducted by the Ministry within the last two months has purged the system of ghost names and saved the nation some money.
Speaking at the May Day celebration at the Black Star Square Monday, President Akufo-Addo said the country spent GH¢36,166,203 per month to maintain the 26,589 ghost workers on government payroll.
Heaving a sigh of relief, he said: " “These 'workers' have not come forward to be biometrically verified by SSNIT, despite numerous calls by the Controller and Accountant General to do so."
Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta on April 18 directed the Controller and Accountant General's Department to delete the names of 26,589 workers from the payroll for not registering on the new SSNIT biometric system.
The biometric verification is essentially to isolate ghost names from the government's payroll.
To avoid anomalies, the Minister instructed the Controller to notify all public servants on government's mechanised payroll system who had not registered on the new system to do so.
The National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) had described the Ministry's action as a ploy to dismiss some public workers in the country.
But the Finance Minister had argued the biometric registration was necessary to clean the payroll and to ensure that people are paid for work done to the country.
President Akufo-Addo assured the workers who had gathered at the Black Star Square his government has put in place other measures to clean the payroll.
He explained this include the integration of the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems Limited (GhIPSS) platform for salaries of public workers that is devoid of manual intervention.
He said his government will start the implementation of the GhIPSS integrated salary platform on a test basis beginning in May. This is expected to cover all workers in the country by June 2017, he added.
“SSNIT has also been asked to create a separate database for the Controller, by biometrically registering close to two hundred thousand CAP30 workers."
According to the President, the cumulative effect is that government's payroll will have a direct interface for all the existing database, expected to reduce payroll fraud to the barest minimum.
"This will provide a complete end-to-end visibility of the entire payroll system, while having a seamless integration between payroll cost and the government’s general ledger,” the President said.
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