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MPs Raise Alarm On Dubious Salary Deductions For Public Servants

A section of lawmakers have raised alarm on the rampant cases of the dubious salary deductions effected on salaries of public servants to service ghost loans the employees neither obtained or are aware of.

 

The alarm followed an audit query raised in the June 2021 Auditor General’s report against Jinja Regional Referral Hospital that highlighted that  apart from one staff Lauben Monday, there were  85 employees whose salaries were deducted to a tune of Shs157,501,350 for loan repayments yet the said loans did not exist and weren’t approved on the payroll deductions management system operated by PCA-Payroll consults Africa as evidence of approval of their loans.

 

This query prompted Sarah Opendi (DWR Tororo) to task the top management of Jinja Regional Referral Hospital to clean up their salary structure, saying the illegal salary deductions have become a crisis with the same query having been raised at Masaka Regional Referral Hospital.

 

“So this calls for a serious investigation because likely there are some people who must be benefitting from this system and we can’t take it lightly. If there is this letter of undertaking from Jinja Regional Referral Hospital, where are these people who are deducting staff salaries seated? What are they using to deduct these salaries? So there must be some mafia team that needs to be unearthed on these unauthorized deductions. The figure might look small, but look at the entire country, it is huge, it might be in billions,” said Opendi.

 

Angella Namala, Deputy Director Jinja Regional Referral Hospital acknowledged before Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) that the hospital has been facing this challenge for long but there are consultations taking place between the hospital management and Payroll Consults Africa Limited to ensure the deductions are deactivated timely.

 

“The mandate has to be on the hospital to support staff in recovering the money that was illegally taken from them because the hospitals who are the custodians of their salaries and because of some omission didn’t deliver to its expectations and the staff had to go through this. I believe the hospital should design a mechanism to recover this money,” explained Namala.

 

However, Asuman Basalirwa (Bugiri Municipality) rejected Namala’s explanation arguing that the explanation given is obvious because it is the duty of the hospital management to protect salaries of its staff from unlawful deductions, given the tedious process the victims have to go through to reclaim the funds from Government.

 

He said, “If you unlawfully deduct money from me, it is just logical that once it is discovered, you give me my money back. And if an officer is found to have conducted unlawful deductions, then they must face the disciplinary committee because you can’t rule out mafias from this system. Otherwise, how comes it is a general problem, each regional referral hospital the auditors are raising this, can it really be an accident, I don’t think it is an accident.”

 

John Mpalanyi (Kyotera County) tasked the Management of Jinja Hospital to explain who is responsible to recover the funds from Government asking, “Who is responsible to initiate the recovery in the event an officer lost the money and what steps have you taken to ensure that the people whose money was deducted is recovered?”

 

 

Basalirwa also revealed that Parliament is investigating reports from public servants that accounting officers are conniving with microfinance entities to commit employees to loans without their knowledge and in return, are paid commission for this heinous vice.

 

“There is an issue that we are also investigating that most of you connive with Microfinance Institutions to commit your staff, the more staff you send, the more commission you get. That is why sometimes you are tempted to send names of people that haven’t given you authoriation. Don’t commit staff outside the known procedure because in any case, the auditors will find out and if they don’t these victims will come to the MPs and these matters will find their way to the public domain,” he said.

 

Auditor General, John Muwanga also revealed in his report that when comparisons were made between the ‘my active deductions’ monthly loan deductions and the actual IPPS loan deductions revealed that 19 employees were being deducted either more or less than the approved loan deductions hence resulting into monthly total over deductions of Shs1,679,330 and under deductions of Shs938,002.

One thought on “MPs Raise Alarm On Dubious Salary Deductions For Public Servants

  1. mulinda asuman

    This Issue is in every district we are facing unsatisfactory salary deductions as civil servants but we are just in the dark, we don’t know who should help us deal with Inhumane act which seems to be a collaborative effort!

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