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Rampant transfer of civil servants affecting retrieval of embezzled funds – MP

A member of the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament, Samuel Nartey George, has asked for a critical look at the rampant transfers of civil servants within public institutions in the country.

His call followed the continuous excuse by spending officers in public institutions that financial infractions reported against their outfits in the 2015/2016 auditor General’s report were committed by their predecessors.

Spending officers together with their heads of department in northern Ghana have since February 12, 2018 been appearing before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to answer questions on public funds that have been misappropriated as per the Auditor General’s report.

The officers were expected by PAC to provide evidence of recommendations by the Auditor General to retrieve money illegally paid staff, contractors, suppliers etc or surcharge themselves for causing financial lost to the state.

However, each encounter comes with its own excuse which have squarely been blamed on transfers of the officers just at the time efforts to retrieve the funds are yielding results.

This, the MP for Ningo-Prampram in the Greater Accra Region believes, is unacceptable.

“We can’t continue taking the same excuses of I was not the officer during the audit when we expect that funds unlawfully paid people are retrieved,” Sam George lamented.

He, however, agreed with the officers on grounds that the delays in retrieving either money wrongfully paid them, or items and services yet to be provided because officers are transferred just when they are settling down in their offices.

“A Coordinating Director said he is the third [to be] transferred to the Assembly in four year”.

Sam George wants the Public Service to relook into the service terms of servants so to allow them space at their stations.

“We need to relook at the rampancy with which we transfer our civil servants. I know that the public service has its own regulations and modalities, but again, you want to build institutional memory so you want to ensure these transfer do not affect the building of structures” he stated.

The Public Account Committee has met heads of department of the Wa and Bolgatanga Polytechnics, the Tamale Technical University, 8 MMDAs in the Upper West, 10 MMDAs in Upper East, and18 MMDAs in the Northern Region by the close of Thursday February 15, 2018.

By Zubaida Ismail||Ghana

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