Home » Ghana Intensifies Payroll Monitoring in Health Sector to Curb Leakages

Ghana Intensifies Payroll Monitoring in Health Sector to Curb Leakages

Fair Wages and Salaries Commission Targets Public Health Institutions for Payroll Exercise

by Adenike Adeodun

In an effort to tighten fiscal management, the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) in Ghana is set to extend its payroll monitoring exercise to public health institutions this year. This move aims to address leakages in the public sector wage bill and rectify workload and salary discrepancies.

The Chief Executive Officer of FWSC, Benjamin Arthur, in a conversation with the Daily Graphic in Accra, revealed that the focus would shift to the health sector. “We expect the team to be on the ground by the first week in February,” he said.

The initiative, which commenced in April last year, initially targeted the Local Government Service across several regions, including the Western, Greater Accra, Central, Volta, and Oti regions. The remaining regions are scheduled to be covered subsequently.

Preliminary findings from the exercise conducted in 17 institutions last year indicated a notable decline in their wage bills. Arthur reported that from April to August 2023, there was an average reduction of 1.2 percent in the wage bill, translating to savings of about GH¢36,108,000.

Additionally, the Controller and Accountant General’s Department (CAGD) observed a reduction in the wage bill for employees on the single spine. This reduction amounted to significant monthly savings for the country, achieving approximately GH¢178,360.000 and GH¢18,448,000 in July and August, respectively.

Arthur commended the CAGD for its instrumental role in the success of the exercise. He also highlighted the benefits of linking the Ghana Card to the payroll system for maintaining clean financial records.

Interestingly, Arthur noted that while the wage bill was decreasing, the number of employees was on the rise. “This suggests that continuing the payroll monitoring exercise could lead to substantial savings for the country,” he stated.

The exercise is not just about fiscal efficiency; it’s also boosting productivity. Arthur explained that it compels employees who previously skipped work to report for duty, knowing their attendance could be checked at any time.

The FWSC has also introduced a programme to link pay to productivity. Last year, the commission sensitized staff in 29 institutions about this initiative. “This year, we aim to reach at least 40 institutions,” Arthur said.

He emphasized the importance of understanding the performance appraisal system. This understanding is crucial for setting institutional and individual targets, thereby enabling performance measurement. The information derived from performance assessments will uncover issues like lack of assignments, inadequate skills, or insufficient budgets, allowing the FWSC to address these challenges and enhance public service productivity.

Arthur envisions a future where payslips are linked to employees’ inputs, allowing a clear view of whether their efforts align with their rewards.

As Ghana embarks on this expanded payroll monitoring journey, the focus on the health sector represents a significant step toward a more efficient and productive public service system.

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