CAGD Parries Payroll Mess

Grace Francisca Adzroe, Controller & Accountant General

The Controller & Accountant General’s Department (CAGD) has disclosed that it does not decide which ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) are put on its payrolls.

Reacting to recent publications by IMANI Ghana on the alleged padding of government’s ghost payroll system, among others, CAGD in a statement endorsed by James Ntim Amponsah for the Controller & Accountant General said MDAs made their own recruitment, prepared input forms to their personnel processing sections who then captured such inputs into the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Database (IPPD) system before CAGD processed the salaries for payment.

‘The role of CAGD in the payment process however includes the validation of personnel data entered by MDAs against inputs they submit to CAGD for that purpose,’ the statement added.

Commenting on the issue of separated staff, it said heads of departments make inputs and delete names from the payroll as required by law.

The CAGD said, ‘Even though the primary responsibility to delete separated staff rests with the heads of departments, CAGD nevertheless takes precautionary measures to suspend salaries of suspected separated staff pending confirmation by the MDAs.’

CAGD said over the years, it has consistently upgraded the technology/system used to run the payroll. We moved from a manual system to the VSE payroll software.

CAGD later replaced the VSE system with the SIGAGIP system using the integrated payroll database. A further review of the payroll system led to the replacement of SIGAGIP with an Oracle HRMIS (IPPD2) which was an integral part of the Public Financial Management Reform Programme (PUFMARP).

IPPD3 was developed as a backup system to the IPPD2 but both are currently being used in production.

National Service Payment
CAGD mentioned that it had no direct involvement in National Service Secretariat (NSS) processing and payment of allowances for the national service personnel. It is, therefore, erroneous to say that CAGD watched over the plunderous activities that took place at the National Service Secretariat.

Moratorium on Employment
‘Some ministries and CAGD have disregarded the publicly declared moratorium on employment by the Ministry of Finance. CAGD does not make recruitment for or on behalf of any MDA.

Handing over the Public Payroll
It is worth noting that SOFT Tribe is already involved in the management of the payroll and is equally confronted with the same challenges of the payroll management.

Some of these challenges include fraudulent promotion dates, false recruitment dates, wrong and zero bank accounts, staff without SSF numbers, among others.

Faulty Accounting System:
CAGD noted that it was not using faulty accounting system as reported.

‘Ghana Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS) which is being implemented on the Oracle e-business suite is an internationally recognised financial management system.

It embodies budget preparation, budget execution, control, accounting, reporting and auditing.

Its achievements (refer cost of GIFMIS) to date are real and not merely boastful.’

Alleged waste of $80m on GIFMIS
On the above, it responded by saying the implementation of GIFMIS has not been a waste to the Republic of Ghana, adding that the report in question was commissioned at the instance of the Controller and Accountant General.

‘The conclusions derived from the analysis made by IMANI do not portray the true picture of the management of the Central GoG Payroll managed by the CAGD.

The recommendations made in the statement can therefore not be the right prescription to successfully address the payroll challenges.’

Skeleton in the cupboard
However, just when the CAGD wrote to distance itself from any corrupt practices on government’s payroll system, the Commercial Crime Unit (CCU) of the CID headquarters has reported the arrest of Gilbert Kwasi Mensah Addison, a 56-year-old account officer from the CAGD together with three others for embezzling an amount of GH¢102, 207 belonging to the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Superintendent Felix Mawusi,Director in charge of the Commercial Crime Unit (CCU), said the theft was detected in November 13, 2014 by the Registrar of the Nursing and Midwifery Council and consequently reported to the police.

According to the report, the deal was detected at the Western Regional Office of the Council at Takoradi from October 1, 2013 to October 31, 2014.

BY Samuel Boadi

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