You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2013 04 15Article 270969

Opinions of Monday, 15 April 2013

Columnist: Sarpong, Justice

The "Guinea Fowl" Government Is In Shambles

There is a karma in this word called poetic justice and NDC is paying a heavy price for stealing an NPP innovative idea and claiming credit for it during the 2012 geheral election. The NDC manifesto for the 2012 general election took credit for the implementation of the Single Spine Salary Structure(SSSS) policy and listed it as one of their gargantuan achievements. The NDC schemed to steal the election and in order to get the Security workers on its corner, it migrated the Police, the Military and the Prison service personnel into the SSSS first and trippled their salaries. Example, a Policeman with a rank of Constable who used to draw a GHc250 monthly salary saw his salary jumped to GHc700.00. All the Policemen and the Army got their salaries trippled and NDC never thought all other government workers will demand the same salary increament and the mess the the country is in is due to the poorly implemented SSSS policy. If you don't believe what I am saying, read what President Mills said on October 15, 2011.

"Mills’ Appeal Speech Taken Out Of Context By NPP – Ablakwa

Date: 15-Oct-2011

A Deputy Minister of Information, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa says social commentators have taken President Mills’ appeal to striking doctors to return to work out of context. President John Mills, during a recent 3 day tour of the Greater Accra Region that began on Tuesday, entreated the doctors to return to duty whilst steps are taken to resolve their grievances. He also accused the New Patriotic Party (NPP) of only announcing the SSSS policy in 2009 but not putting in place any strategy for implementation.He berated the NPP government for only making an “empty announcement” about the SSSS without making any arrangements for its implementation, just a day " I have been saying for days that NPP came up with the SSSS policy but before they can implement it, Afrai Djan and the NDC might have colluded to steal the 2012 election and NDC implemented the SSSS policy without knowing how the NPP would have implemented this policy and creating problems for themselves. P/NDC has never been known have implemented any policy successfully in their 24 years misrule of the country and the SSSS implementation has been their biggest failure since it is going to bankcrupt the country to HIPC status again.

The implementation of the SSSS policy, creation of forty five(45) New constituencies with its attendant 45 new Districts have trippled government salary expenses coupled with corruption in this administration that has manifested itself in the SADA guinea fowl and tree planting projects which are wreaking havoc to the Ghana economy. Many agencies including some International ones like IMF has this to say about the wage bill of the country.

"The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Friday urged government to gain control over the wage bill, saying rising debt levels could endanger government’s transformation agenda.A ballooning wage bill, if untamed, will bring debt to levels that could endanger the government’s transformation agenda. The wage bill in 2012 rose by 47 per cent and the IMF mission has recommended a thorough audit of the 2012 payroll."

A university Professor by name Dr Gyampo said almost the same thing about the dire political consequences the country is facing if the economic situation is not improved with these words; "Ghana may suffer a “democratic relapse” if the current “anarchic disorder” is not curtailed.Doctors, teachers, pharmacists and judicial service workers have taken turns to go on strike following botched negotiations with the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission on the implementation of the Single Spine Salary Structure."

After many weeks of this administration denials about the government being broke, the Finance Minister, Mr Terkper finally admitted of problems in this administration in meeting its financial obligations to the country and just yesterday, April 12, 2013, we read in Ghanaweb forum the reality of the total collapse of the Ghana's economy.

"General News of Friday, 12 April 2013 Source: citifmonline

Gov't has no money to pay road contractors - Minister

Government says it has no money to pay road contractors in the country following complains by some road contractors about the effects of the non-payment of their outstanding payments.Roads and Highway Minister, Alhaji Amin Sulemana, however, in response has indicated that the current wage bill and demands of striking labour unions is putting pressure on the public purse and is therefore not in a position to pay contractors at this time"

"General News of Friday, 12 April 2013 Source: Joy Online

NADMO in GHS186m debt, international donors fed up

NADMO has lamented that it will not be able to help in case of a disaster this rainy season because of crippling debt while international humanitarian agencies are reportedly fed up and frustrated with Ghana’s inability to deal with perennial flooding, especially in the capital Accra."We are in debt amounting to GHS186m. In the last four months to the end of the year, nobody gave us a pesewa. Go to Finance (Ministry) and find if they have given us one pesewa to buy petrol. My people in the regions and districts, you can contact them. Nobody has anything. Our warehouses are empty". ---Kofi Porturphy, National Coordinator, (NADMO)---

"General News of Friday, 12 April 2013 Source: Joy Online

SADA money not accounted for - MP raises alarm

A member of Parliament’s Finance Committee, Afenyo Markin is demanding the whereabouts of GH¢38m which was part of the GH¢165m disbursed into the UBA account of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) by the Finance Ministry. He noted that when the Finance Minister appeared before the committee, he said GH¢165 million has been given to SADA for various projects. But when the Chief Executive of SADA appeared before it, he said he has only received GH¢128 million."

As recently as December 2012, NDC was trumpeting about its gargantuan achievement in migrating workers to the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS),something I have said repeatedly was wrongly implemented. Now it has been admitted by NDC and some Labour Experts that, the implementation of this policy has wrecked havoc to our economy coupled with the EC and NDC bonehead decision to create forty five new constituencies and 45 District Assemblies that has increased government Employees by at least one thousand people at a time this government should be decreasing the size of the government.

No country on the face of God green Earth can survive when the government is using even 50% of its revenue on government workers salaries alone let alone 75% as this administration has done. We were using just 25% of our revenue to meet the salary obligations of government workers as recently as June 2012 until NDC decided to buy the loyalty of the Security services when their salaries were trippled which culminated in all other government workers demanding the same increase that has trippled government wage bill from 2.5 billion dollars to 8 billion dollars. Now 75% of all goverbnment revenue goes to meet salary obligations before we pay interest on the government debt of 17 billion dollars which leaves practically nothing for infrastructure development.

Professor Stephen Addai,A former Rector of the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), has this to say about the SSSS,"the implementation of the policy will destroy the country if care is not taken."

The SSSS policy as it had been implemented so far has wrecked havoc on our economy and it is hard to get the genie back in the bottle. President Mahama is trying to address a policy badly implemented by NDC which he was fully involved by coming out with policy changes.

The government will, henceforth, determine market premium and will not make it a subject of negotiations, a White Paper on the guidelines for market premiums on the Single Spine Pay Policy (SSPP) has stated.“Government acknowledges that market premium shall be determined for critical but scarce skills and jobs through the conduct of comparative salary surveys.The document defined market premium as "an absolute amount paid only to employees with critical skills in short supply”, adding that the premium would not be calculated as a percentage of a worker’s basic salary."

So how is the government going to justify the 300% increase in the salaries of the Police, Army and the Prison service workers? I guess the above services personnel will be classified as market premuim jobs that are difficult to fill when we have 100 people fighting for every one vacancy that comes up to be filled.

Ghana is flirting with disaster if we fail to do something about the wage bill of Ghana. We were spending only 25% of our revenue on salaries before the implementation of the SSSS policy which has bankcrupted the government at the moment.European governments spend an average of 8% on government salaries. USA spends about 3% of its budget on federal government workers.You cannot spend 75% of your revenue on salaries alone which leaves you practically nothing for infrastructure development after paying interest on your deficits and other obligations.The biggest problem for the government of Ghana at the moment is the runaway government salary bill.

Justice Sarpong

(CARDINAL of TRUTH)