Mr Christian Sottie, Controller and Accountant-General, yesterday said his office is awaiting approval from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning to implement the Health Workers Salary Structure for 2007 and 2008.
Speaking at a meeting with government pensioners in Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolis in the Western Region during a two-day visit, he said, this is due to the budgetary implications of the structure for pensions.
Mr Sottie said currently, most Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) have their own salary structures different from the general salary structures previously used to pay pension.
He said the Controller and Accountant-General Department (CAGD) is currently identifying the departments of other retirees to enable it to put them on their actual salary structures and to pay their pension arrears.
Mr Sottie said it is estimated that 80 per cent of the work involving pension processing is performed by the MDAs and 20 per cent at the CAGD. He said problems that had been identified as major contributors to delays in processing and payment of Gratuity and Pensions at the CAGD included late submission of documents and files by MDAs, submission of incomplete and inaccurate information and confirmation of third party institutions.
Mr Sottie said measures that have been instituted by the CAGD to curtail delays in pension payment included education of MDAs on the need to submit pension documents of their staff on time and the establishment of a Pension Committee to resolve some grey issues involving pension payment.
He said the CAGD has engaged Information Technology experts to automate the file tracking system at the Pension Section and this project is expected to be completed by April 2008.
Mr Sottie said the CAGD is in the process of finalising a manual to be used by MDAs and its pension sections and is building its own data base by scanning all documents which are kept by third party institutions.