FOLASHADE Yemi-Esan, acting Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, HCSF, confirmed on Monday that the Federal Government has activated the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System IPPIS, to weed out ghost staff in the civil service who were collecting salaries without letters of appointment.
She disclosed this at the opening ceremony of the pilot induction programme for the 700 newly recruited officers on grade level 07 to 10, which was held in Abuja, according to a report.
“For years, we have been trying to activate the Human Resource Module of the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Information System in the public service. But we are bringing five more ministries (Finance, Budget and National Planning, Aviation, Transport, Petroleum Resources, and Science and Technology) on board in addition to the Head of the Civil Service,” she said.
The payment system, initiated by the Bureau of Public Service Reforms, BPSR, in partnership with the World Bank in 2006 which officially commenced in 2007 started with seven Ministries Departments and Agencies, MDAs. It currently has incorporated the payment plan in the Human Resource, HR, module of the civil service.
The HR module’s implementation means automating staff records of the Federal Public Service to enhance data integrity, eliminate ghost workers and facilitate efficient service delivery.
When The ICIR visited the portal, it showed that 459 MDAs including the Nigeria Police and other paramilitary agencies have been enrolled in the system with total staff strength of over 300,000 civil servants, which was last updated on 31st, June 2017.
The information on the website did not reflect that changes had been made to the IPPIS database since 2017.
A press statement published on the website revealed that the implementation of the HR module was expected to have been taken place since 2015 when it was announced by the then outgoing Permanent Secretary, Career Management Office of the HCSF, Mohammed Abass in 2014.
“What this means is that everything administrative concerning civil servants will be done on the HR Module. It will help eliminate a lot of ghost workers; people that do not have certificates or letters of appointment but are claiming to be civil servants,’ she stated.
She urged the new recruits against taking for granted the job security in the civil service, seeing that such an attitude to work would impede their progress on the job.
“Following President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive, we have commenced the process for the complete implementation of the HR Module of the IPPIS. The module is also designed to improve efficiency in the payroll system as well as enhance data integrity and consolidate staff records and management.
“With the steady transformation of the service to operate a more productive system, change is inevitable,” she said.
Speaking to the newly recruited civil servants on work ethics, Yemi-Esan said that the induction was last held in 2013, noting that its resurgence would among other advantages save time and resources, improve operational efficiency and promote good organisational communication.
Amos Abba is a journalist with the International Center for Investigative Reporting, ICIR, who believes that courageous investigative reporting is the key to social justice and accountability in the society.