Bong County Senior Senator Jewel Howard-Taylor
Senate Holds Public Hearing On Salary Disparity
By Ballah M. Kollie/LINA
MONROVIA, February 20 (LINA) - The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee headed by Bong County Senior Senator Jewel Howard-Taylor Friday started hearings into the issue of salary disparity in the public sector.
The Blue Ribbon Committee is an ad-hoc committee constituted by the Senate to investigate issues of salary disparity within the Civil Service.
According to Senator Taylor, the hearing is aimed at addressing the disparity which has a long-standing history in the country.
Following the presentation by the Civil Service Agency, the committee will craft a scheme to synchronize the salaries of civil servants, beginning next budget year.
In his presentation, Civil Service Director-General George K. Warner identified ‘huge wage bill but low performance’ as posing financial constraints on the national budget.
He said as part of efforts to address the situation of salary disparity, the agency has rationalized its salary scale that suggests the payment of all persons in government and in a particular category, a fixed salary.
He said the new scale includes the scrapping of the payment of incentives by discretion, noting that such policy has over the period undermined commitment and productivity.
The fixed payment scheme will for the next three years strive to pay better salaries that are manageable and affordable by government, Warner added.
Meanwhile, the President Pro-Tempore of the Liberian Senate, Armah Z. Jallah has expressed explicit confidence in the ability of the Blue Ribbon Committee to finally resolve the issue of salary disparity in the public sector.
Already, the Civil Service Agency says it has fired several persons found on two or more government payrolls, while ‘ghost names’ have been dropped through the bio data program currently being implemented.