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Education Ministry, public universities record most payroll infractions – IAA discloses

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The Internal Audit Agency (IAA) has disclosed that public institutions like the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health and public universities have emerged as institutions with the most payroll infractions over the period.

This was revealed when the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) visited the Internal Audit Agency to monitor its payroll under the National Payroll Monitoring Exercise.

The Commission a week ago announced its intended exercise to rid government’s payroll of infractions and other anomalies that need to be corrected.

Addressing the media when the commission made its first stop at the Internal Audit Agency, its Director General, Dr. Eric Oduro Osae said these infractions will burden government’s finances if not checked.

“When you look at the public sector payroll, per the work we have done on accounts following a directive from the Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, the risky areas where we think these payroll and unearned salaries are on the increase, include the educational sector, health sector, local government sector, if we don’t keep an eye on the payroll of these sectors, it will keep bloating and it will affect us. And the other areas we are looking at is the tertiary institutions.”

“There are people who go on sabbatical and some never return, some go on study leave with pay and after graduation, they fail to return but have their names on the payroll, some of them do not even come to work. There are instances where people are employed in the public sector and their bosses ask them to stay at home because there’s no place to sit, they are home and government pays them”.

He said the Ministry of Finance has been advised to delete the names of staff captured in these payroll infractions.

“All these people if we cite them in our report, we ask the Accountant General’s Department and Ministry of Finance to delete their names from the payroll,” he stated.

He clarified that the payroll infractions are “not across the entire public sector, but selected public sector institutions”.

Speaking at the engagement, the Chief Executive Officer for the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission, Benjamin Arthur said the commission ahead of the exercise warned individuals and heads of government institutions to desist from such acts.

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