The Controller and Accountant General, Christian Tetteh Sottie Thursday explained that the inability of his outfit to meet advertised scheduled pay dates in the later part of 2006 and the first half of 2007 was mainly due to the migration of some employee's data from the Integrated Personnel Payroll Database soft ware onto the IPPD2 software. That, he said, posed some challenges, because some of the workers" data in the IPPD1 were not correct.
Mr Sottie who was addressing workers and pensioners at Koforidua on Thursday as part of his regional tour said that due to pressure put on the government by some workers especially the health workers and Ghana National Association of Teachers, the Controller and Accountant General Department was forced to move onto the new system of payment in a haste thereby creating may problems, including disparities in payment of salaries and allowances.
He declared, "we went into the IPPD2 without being given time to migrate the system" adding, "the system had not gotten the history of many workers".
Mr Sottie said there are two categories of workers whose promotional arrears are still outstanding, naming the first category as those whose arrears programme have not been ran by the Controller and Accountant General Department because the IPPD2 software was unable to recognise their data to the absence of their employee history which was not loaded from the old IPPD1 onto the IPPD2 during the migration.
He declared "some aspects of it were hastily done to enable us pay the agitating Health sector workers in July 2006. This history loading has now been completed up to 2004 and such workers would soon be paid their arrears as soon as the data is approved after a special audit".
He said the second category of workers are those whose arrears programmes have not been ran due to data entry errors by the various payroll Processing officers at the Ministries, Departments and Agencies.
Mr Sottie said the Controller and Accountant General has its own problems, and advised workers that, resorting the radio stations and demonstrations to press home their demands should be the last option saying that it could be done only when all other redress avenues have been exhausted and deemed to have failed.
He told workers that "a delay in your payment equally affect us. A lot of sacrifices are made by staff of the PPD which includes forgoing weekends and statutory holidays to work on payroll and to ensure timely payment on schedule". He said the Controller and Accountant General has a total of 362,000 workers and 100,000 pensioners on its payroll.
Mr. Sottie advised workers to jealously guard their pay slips as there are indications that some unscrupulous persons are stealing such slips to purchase goods using impersonating transactions. He disclosed that a number of such cases are already being prosecuted in the law courts.
Seidu Ketomah, head of Payroll hinted that the double arrears paid to those GES workers would be recovered as from ending of February 2008. He urged workers to insist that their SSNIT deductions are recorded on their pay slips and also demand their statement of account from SSNIT on regular basis to guarantee payment of their pension during retirement.
By Peter Abban