About 13 state institutions will soon be weaned off the Government Payroll, the Chief Executive Officer of the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC), Dr. Edward Kwarpong has stated.
The move, according to him, will lead to government checking its wage bill which currently absorbs about 50% of revenues collected. It is also aimed at attracting some Best brains into the public sector and improve productivity.
“In our bid to control the wage bill, we have asked certain organizations and corporations that were set up like a commercial venture to also wean themselves off the Single Spine Salary Structure; wean themselves off government subvention and when they do that they will be allowed some space to determine their salary levels,” Dr. Kwarpong told Starr Business’ Osei Owusu Amankwaah.
He continued it will also ensure that organisations operating in a more business-like manner are sustainable and profitable.
“… In that regard,” he said “you cannot compel them to come unto the Single Spine Salary Structure because they are no longer dependent on the consolidated fund, they are no longer subverted. So immediately they would want to improve on the conditions of service and attract the best of talent” Dr. Kwarpong added.
Nonetheless, he maintained that the Commission will exercise strong oversight responsibility over the companies to ensure proper financial management.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA), the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA), Energy Commission are among the companies who are finalizing their processes.
“There is one institution whose name I will not mention. After they [were] given the green light to wean off, immediately they were increasing salaries 100 percent. We said yes, do you have the ability? They said yes. So fine no sweat. But it has implication for the rest of the institution in the public service because we compare; workers keep comparing their conditions with others.
“So in the same sector, I am still on the single spine because I am depending on government subvention; you have gone solo; independent, and then you double your salary you know the kind of tension; yes you have weaned off yourself from government subvention but we still want to maintain a certain level of control to ensure that it doesn’t cause any agitation for improvement in condition of service for similar institution that cannot be weaned off immediately,” Dr. Kwarpong said.
The government is bent on making the autonomy of state agencies a standing policy going forward. The move is also part of efforts by the government to rationalize expenditure and lessen the debt profile of the economy.
The Commission is currently working on other proposals to give the final approval to some agencies.