Payroll Harmonization Exercise

    Payroll Harmonization Exercise
    CSA Boss held a Press Briefing at MICAT Photo credit: Melvin Pawa

    OFFICIAL STATEMENT BY HON. LAURINE WEDE JOHNSON DIRECTOR-GENERAL, CIVIL SERVICE AGENCY ON THE GOVERNMENT OF LIBERIA

    PAYROLL HARMONIZATION EXERCISE

     

    Hon. Lenn Eugene Nagbe, Minister of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism,

    Distinguished Members of the Cabinet, Senior Officials of Government,

    Members of the Press

    Fellow Liberians,

    Firstly, let me use this opportunity to thank His Excellency Dr. George M. Weah, Sr., for his leadership and the political support he continues to give the Wage Bill Steering committee consisting of the Civil service Agency and the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning as we work with our colleagues: Ministers and Heads of all Spending Entities across Government.

    Additionally, let me also use this occasion to thank the Ministers of Finance and Development Planning and State for Presidential Affairs for their support and the hard-working technical team who continue to have sleepless nights in an effort to compete this all-important assignment.

    Fellow Liberians, Members of the Cabinet, Officials of Government and Member of the Press:

    The Government of Liberia constituted a wage bill committee consisting of the CSA and MFDP with the mandate to make policy recommendations to reform pay and harmonize the payroll of all spending entities. The rationale for this pay/payroll reform was basically to standardize pay across government and reduce the huge irregularities and disparities in salaries.

    The Government wage bill grew from around US$30 Million in 2005/06 to US319.6 million in 2018/19—accounting for around 67% of actual revenue. Already at an unsustainable level of growth, the wage bill was expected to continue to rise, due to poor human resource management practices across the government, especially related to employment, and the discretionary management of allowances which is about 60% of government’s expenditureand is really troubling the economy. This outlook overcrowded our Government’s ability to fund additional developmental projects, a major challenge the Wage Bill Technical Committee led by the Civil Service Agency and MFDP is addressing.

    Fellow Liberians, Members of the Cabinet, Officials of Government and Member of the Press:

    The Guiding Principlesof the Wage Harmonization includes but limited to the following:

    • Affordability- The size of the wage bill should be commensurate with available budget resources and GOL’s overall expenditure priorities;
    • Equity - Compensation is to be determined on an objective basis that reflects the relative value of positions.
    • Transparency- There is clarity in pay policy, the composition of the overall pay package and;
    • Competitiveness - Competitive compensation is an important factor in attracting and retaining the skills that governments need to fulfil their functions and deliver services to the public.

     

    Fellow Liberians, Members of the Cabinet, Officials of Government and Member of the Press:

    The overall goal of this exercise is to maintain and implementa sustainable Public-Sector Personnel and Wage Bill Management System.

    The specific objectives the exercise consider are but not limited to the following:

    • Achieve reasonable reduction in the overall GoL Wage Bill from around 60% to 40% of total revenue.
    • Elimination of waste and abuse in the personnel and pay system of all spending entities.
    • Improved pay and standardized management of human resources across the Government of Liberia.

     

    Fellow Liberians, Members of the Cabinet, Officials of Government and Member of the Press:

    The strategy employed by the team are as follow:

    • Harmonize the wages of all employees of the GoL through the application of a standard pay and grade structure.
    • Eliminate the discretionary allowance system and collapse all pay and allowances into a SINGLE PAY.
    • Centralize public sector HR management systems and processes through the CSA.
    • Implement a Limited Replacement Program of retired civil servants.
    • Engage in vigorous payroll cleaning.
    • Pursue the completion of the reform of all MACs, through the GC 

     

    Fellow Liberians, Members of the Cabinet, Officials of Government and Member of the Press:

    Below is a summary analysis of the payroll harmonization exercise

    • A total 66,538 employees from central government have been graded for now according to the GOL revised pay grade structure. They include teachers, health workers, security officers, foreign service employees, and presidential appointees among others;
    • Of the 66,538 employees from central government, 56,338 or 85% of the employees were protected from any downward adjustment in pay. They include teachers, health workers, security officers, foreign service employees and employees currently earning below their assessed pay grade; and
    • Of the 66,538 employees from central government, 14,900 or 27% of the employees protected will also get an immediate monthly pay increase beginning July 2019. Employees to receive the increment in pay are:
    • Additional US$50 will added on the monthly pay for each of the Liberia Immigration Service (LIS) Officer, Liberia National Fire Service (LNFS) Officer and the Liberia Drug Enforcement (LDEA) Officer;
    • Additional US$36 will be added on the monthly pay for each officer of the Liberian National Police (LNP);
    • Additional US$30 will be added on the monthly pay for each officer of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL);
    • Additional US$15 will be added on the monthly pay for each Probation and Correction officer;
    • 3,500 teachers currently earning between US$40-US$75 on supplementary payroll will now earn US$100; and
    • 114 health workers within the Ministry of Health currently earning below US$100 will now earn US$100.

    Fellow Liberians, Members of the Cabinet, Officials of Government and Member of the Press:

    Beginning July 2019,the following new policy change has been effected to guide the GoL Reform efforts:

    The Application of Uniformed Policy & Standards using the CSA:

    • Merit-Base Recruitment; 
    • Human Resource Management Policy; and 
    • Civil Service Standing Orders

     

    Centralize the Management of Personnel Actions through the CSA

    • Recruitment and Selection;
    • Promotion, Transfer, Deletion;
    • Classification & Grading; and
    • Testing

    Centralize the Management of GoL Payroll System through the CSA:

    • A single payroll
    • A single pay system

    Fellow Liberians, Members of the Cabinet, Officials of Government and Member of the Press:

    In conclusion,The CSA and MFDP are very committed to ensuring that government of Liberia maintains a clean and concise payroll that predicts the workforce in term of pensions, capacity development/enhancement and manpower planning.

    THANK YOU.