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Counties on spot for flouting payroll process by paying Sh15 billion wages manually

Counties on spot for flouting payroll process by paying Sh15 billion wages manually, according to Controller of Budget report.

Ten counties are being investigated for using manual payrolls to pay wages totaling more than Sh15 billion.

A report from the Controller of Budget states that this is contrary to the IPPD system’s recommendations.

Bomet County paid Sh1.24 billion in wages using the manual system, according to a report from the controller of the budget for the fiscal year 2021–2022.

Other counties with the highest wage payments made through the manual system include Nakuru (Sh1.06 billion), Garissa (Sh1.03 billion), Vihiga (Sh934.89 million), Siaya (Sh792.55 million), Kiambu (Sh776.11 million), Homa Bay (Sh694.33 million), Laikipia (Sh646.68 million), Kisumu (Sh515.30 million), Murang’a (Sh504.12 million) and Bungoma (Sh214 million).

Baringo wages amounting to Sh115.3 million were processed through the manual system and accounted for 3.3 percent of the total payroll cost.

“It is government policy that salaries should be processed through the Integrated Personnel and Payroll Database(IPPD) system. Counties are advised to fast-track the acquisition of personal numbers for their staff to facilitate the use of the IPPD system,” the report recommended.

The Bungoma government processed salaries amounting to Sh214.92 million through a manual payroll.

The county processed Sh4.8 billion through the IPPD system, while 4.3% of the total earnings were processed manually.

Busia, Sh109.8 million was processed through a manual payroll, putting the payroll at risk of abuse and loss of public funds.

Others that used the illegal manual system include Isiolo (Sh21.6 million), Kajiado (Sh13.01 million), Kakamega (Sh317.36 million), Kericho (Sh343 million), Kilifi (Sh290 million) and Kirinyaga (Sh141.77 million).

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The majority of counties said that their failure to input all staff wages into the IPPD system was due to a lack of personal file numbers.

In order to guarantee that the complete salary bill is processed through the recommended mechanism, Ms. Nyakang’o suggested that county governments expedite the processing of staff personal numbers.

She pointed out that the manual payroll system is open to abuse and that a deficiency in controls could result in the loss of public cash.

“County governments are required to have migrated to the Unified Human Resource Information System by October 1, 2022, in line with the guidelines by the Head of Public Service,” the report said.

The electronic payroll seeks to end the practice of corrupt officials claiming salaries on behalf of “ghost employees”.

In 2014, a preliminary audit of the public service payroll revealed that Kenyan taxpayers were losing more than Sh1.8 billion annually in salary payments to ghost workers.

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