Junior doctors to be paid in two weeks; Finance Minister assures

Agitated medical doctors threatening to abandon work over unpaid salaries may recieve their 11 months’ salary arrears in two weeks’ time, Finance Minister Seth Terkper has assured.

“I can assure them…in two weeks’ time, those whose clearances have been forwarded and awaiting financial credit would be paid,” Seth Terkper said.

He gave the assurance on Joy FM and MultiTV’s news analysis programme, Newsfile, Saturday.

Some 91 junior doctors have been battling government over their unpaid salaries, eleven months after they started working in avrious public hspitals across the country. They have planned to picket at the officees of the Controller and Accountant General’s Department until their monies are fully paid.

However, explaining the cause of the almost one year delay in the payment of the salaries to the health workers, the Minister said the situation has been caused by the current remuneration system, stressing that there are plans to solve the problem.

He said government has made bold strides in automating all paper applications in the public sector – including those for leave, transfer, payment, employment etc.

According to him, the current system takes 30 months for Ministries, Departments and Agencies to enter the personal data of the young doctors into government’s payroll system.

“The reason being once you leave school, you are posted, you go to your district and you start the application process. In your district, that paper work – and it is manual – is brought all the way to the region and to the national. Then they are put together and someone has to input them before it interfaces with the payroll. This is what is causing the delay”.

“For the teachers and the health workers who are going to be posted before next year, the solution is to pay them salaries in advance so that at least every month they know they are having something in advance until they are processed”, he said.

He said these governemnt workers who would be receiving salary advance would be used to pilot the electronic migration of paper applications.

Story by Ghana | Myjoyonline.com | George Nyavor | [email protected]

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