Civil Service Association Welcomes Harmonization Process
The President of the Civil Service Association of Liberia Moibah Johnson has welcomed the recent harmonization program launched by the Government of Liberia aimed at reducing the current wage bill.
“This harmonization for us, we appreciate it. This harmonization will curve all of the abnormalities that occurs into the sector” Johnson noted. Speaking Thursday at the regular press briefing of the Ministry of Information in Monrovia, Johnson indicated that the harmonization process will discourage officials of government from employing people all by themselves without going through the Civil Service Agency of Liberia.
He added that the harmonization process will subsequently ensure a handsome package for Civil servants upon their retirement.
The Civil Service Association official lamented that the increment in the wage bill of the government came as the result of the introduction of the general allowance for civil servants by former president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
Johnson said the general allowance introduction was actually intended to ups salaries of civil servants who according to him were receiving around US$15.00 or its equivalent in Liberian Dollars before the ascendency of President Sirleaf.
He cited that the decision by former President Sirleaf to give authority to officials of government to disbursed general allowance for employees, stressing that the privilege allowed government officials to hire family members, cronies, friends etc without going through the regular process of the Civil Service Agency of Liberia.
“She under cut her own magnanimity by giving the description authority to officials of government to disburse general allowance” Johnson noted.
He further lamented that Civil servants were adversely affected because what was intended for them was not given to them.
Meanwhile, the Executive Director of the Liberia Macroeconomic Policy Analysis Capacity Building Project (LIMPAC) at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning, Del Francis Wreh, during a press conference recently at the Ministry of Information, said the harmonization process will help ensure the timely payment in salaries across the government.
“The new strategy to ensure timely payment under the Minister of Finance instruction is to open a separate payroll account where 60 percent of the revenue collected on a daily basis is deposited into the payroll account,” Wreh indicated.
He stressed that the harmonization process will enable the government to have sufficient monies to pay 80-90 percent of the payroll, noting: “This is the new strategy to sustain timely payment (of salaries) after the harmonization.
According to the LIMPAC official, the harmonization process has drastically reduced the Government of Liberia spending on salaries from US$27.5million to US$25.6 million.
Wreh stated that the government has already harmonized 66,538 of the civil servants salaries, citing that 85 percent the total number of harmonized employees were protected from downward adjustment in salaries.
He said 56,338, which constitute 85 percent of the 66,538 employees, will not experience pay cut as a result of the harmonization process.
Civil servants in such category, according to the harmonization team, include teachers, health workers, security officers, Foreign Service employees and employees that are currently earning below their assessed pay grade.
Wreh assured the public that 27 percent of the 56,338 civil servants who were protected during the harmonization process will get immediate pay rise, beginning the 2019/2020 fiscal year.
He said the harmonization process is intended to benefit the entire country by saving monies that will be used to support other sectors of the government which will subsequently be beneficial to the entire nation rather than the few that are in the employ of the Government of Liberia.