Okonjo-Iweala sets trap for ghost workers •Catches 46,821

Posted by News Express | 23 July 2013 | 5,281 times

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Nigeria’s Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, yesterday expanded the trap which she set in April 2012 for ghost workers in the federal service via the introduction of the Government Integrated Financial Management and Information System (GIFMIS).

Savings payroll cost to date is N118.9 billion and about 46,821 ghost workers have been identified, according to the minister. Also, 58 percent of the budget is now being executed through GIFMIS and it will rise to 79 per cent by the end of the third quarter of 2013, said Okonjo-Iweala while inaugurating a committee to expedite the implementation of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) and GIFMIS.

IPPISS is designed to enhance personnel cost planning and budgeting as personnel cost will be based on actual verified numbers and not estimates. GIFMIS, on the other hand, is aimed at improving the acquisition, allocation, utilisation and conservation of public financial resources using automated and integrated, effective, efficient and economic information systems.

The committee is made up of the Minister of State Ministry of Finance, Dr. Yerima Ngama, as Chairman; Accountant General of the Federation, Mr. Jonah Otunla; Director of the Budget Office of the Federation, Dr. Bright Okogu; Permanent Secretary Ministry of Finance Mr. Danladi Kefas; Managing Director of Financial Derivates Co. Nig. Ltd., Mr. Bismarck Rewane; Managing Partner at Partnerships Management Consultancy and Financial Advisory, Angela Adeboye; Managing Director of jumia.com, Mr. Tunde Kehinde; and Mr. Farouk Gumel of Pricewater Cooper. It will work assiduously for the full implementation of the two systems expected to be completed by the end of the year.

When completed, all public servants will be on a database that enables biometric payment directly from the Accountant General’s office, thereby checking fraud and corruption.

“This is a singular approach whereby we can bring this country up to date, curb corruption and modernise,” Okonjo-Iweala said.

“The system being built is an institutional process that will endure. It is very exciting because it puts the country on an electronic platform,” she added.

The minister explained that two systems have already started with good results. According to her, 215 MDAs consisting of 153,019 staff have been on IPPIS since January 2013 while work is ongoing to bring in the remaining 321 MDAs.

The terms of reference of the committee include identifying MDAs that have already been connected and challenges and issues facing them before expansion. They will provide a monthly progress report to the minister and a comprehensive report upon completion of the assignment.

In his remark, Ngerima noted the need for more advocacy, explaining that lack of information and reluctance are the main reasons for delay.

Photo: Okonjo-Iweala.

Source: News Express

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