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08.09.2004 General News

State lost C2bn in two Ministries' salary payment

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Accra, Sept. 8, GNA - The State lost nearly two billion cedis in just two Ministries due to overpayment and wrongful payment of salaries to undeserving staffs, the Auditor General Report for 2002 presented to Parliament said.

The two Ministries are Health and Education, Youth and Sports. The Health Ministry wrongfully paid 1.699,072.801 cedis to undeserving staff and consequently a sum of 79,511,824 cedis to the Social Security Insurance Trust as employer's contributions to the pension scheme on behalf of the officers to whom the wrong payments were made.

The Education, Youth and Sports Ministry on the other hand over paid 133.9 million cedis due to inadequate review of the monthly payroll.

A copy of the report made available to the Ghana News Agency on Wednesday said the situation at the Ministry of Health was due to the absence of information flow between the various sectors of the Management Units and the Account Sections of the various health institutions.

This it said made it difficult for the Account Section to initiate the deletion of names from the Government Payroll.

The report charged the Management to recover the 1.70 billion cedis and called for measures to be put in place to ensure prompt deletion of unwanted names from Government Payrolls by the Controller and Account General's Department.

It said a review of Chief Director's account disclosed a sum of 109.0 million cedis paid for an orientation seminar without any statement of account made available.

The Health Ministry paid 9.42 billion cedis to institutions within and outside the health Service without supporting documents such as official receipts.

At the Education, Youth and Sports Ministry, the report noted five instances where separated staff continued to receive their salaries amounting to 2.9 million cedis for periods ranging from two to four months. In one instance the unearned salary was paid for nine months.

It also noted a high incidence of misappropriations and irregularities of about 169.2 million cedis arising from the failure to put in place adequate procedure for managing cash.

The report drew management's attention to the law and advised that steps be taken to retrieve the monies and establish procedures to safeguard cash management.