Payroll monitoring will make case for review of Single Spine – Fair Wages

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Fair Wages and Salaries Commission
Fair Wages and Salaries Commission

The Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) says the outcome of its planned payroll monitoring exercise would make a case for the review of the Single Spine Salary Structure (SPSS).

The FWSC on Wednesday announced that it would embark on a National Payroll Monitoring Exercise from April 1, 2023, in accordance with the FWSC Act, 2007 (Act 737).

The Commission said the exercise would not only sanitise the Public Sector Payroll but would also help to identify the lapses and inequalities in the benefits and allowances of public sector workers.

In an interview with the Ghana News Agency on Wednesday, Mr Benjamin Arthur, Chief Executive, FWSC, said “it is likely” that there are “ghost names” on the Public Sector Payroll.

Explaining the approach of the exercise, he said the FWSC would peruse and analyse the payroll data of all public sector institutions and verify on the field to ensure that the remuneration, allowances, and benefits approved by the Commission were implemented accordingly.

Mr Arthur said the Exercise “will not be an event” but would be done continuously across the country in compliance with the Commission’s legal mandate.

“It is likely that there are ghost names on the register. Day in and out, you could have an individual deceased but between the time that the individual died and the time that we can take the person off the payroll entirely, there would have been a time elapsed and within that time frame, you can refer to that individual as a ghost worker.

“If an individual is not supposed to be on the payroll but through fraudulent means, the person is on the payroll but is not working and nowhere to be found in that organisation and yet is being paid, that is a very clear incident of a ghost worker,” he said.

Mr Arthur rejected claims that the FWSC did not have the mandate to undertake payroll monitoring, arguing that the FWSC Act empowered the Commission to undertake that task.

Section 3B of the FWSC Act directs the Commission to “develop and monitor allowances and benefits of public servants and the consolidation of salaries of public servants.”

The Act further enjoins the Commission to “coordinate, manage, and monitor collective bargaining processes in which Government is the direct or indirect employer.”

Mr Arthur said the FWSC had received the backing of all relevant institutions and that the exercise would take off in April as announced.

“Any institution that we will be visiting would be informed. Some of the institutions have been in the known for a very long time before this public notice. For some, we have gathered data based on which they would be engaged,” he said.

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