Liberia: Ministry of Internal Affairs Dismisses Human Resource Manager for Payroll Padding
Monrovia – The Ministry of Internal Affairs on Tuesday, March 24, dismissed its Director for Human Resource, for alleged falsification and padding of the ministry’s payroll.
The ministry took the decision to dismiss Mr. Stephen Kayea on Tuesday, March 24.
It can be recalled that the Internal Audit Agency (IAA) recently alarmed the inclusion of about 700 ghost names on the MIA’s payroll following a recent audit.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with FrontPage Africa via telephone on Tuesday, the Director of Communications at the MIA, Abraham S. Kromah disclosed that following the conduct of the audit, the Ministry requested for a payroll verification.
Kromah pointed out that the verification was carried out by the Civil Service Agency in conjunction with the IAA.
He added that following the conduct of the verification, it was established that dozens of employees who were inactive as a result of death, incapability or resignation were allegedly replaced by Mr. Kayea outside of the Personnel Action Notice (PAN).
Mr. Kromah alleged that Mr. Kayea placed about 46 additional names on the payroll without any authorization.
He stated that several county superintendents had expressed concerns that names of employees who died or abandoned jobs have not been replaced, but records showed that they were already receiving their salaries.
“Whenever the superintendents come to the ministry, they find out that there is no vacancy even though it should actually be there, ” he said.
“The Human Resource Director will just keep sending them around. When the Minister of Internal Affairs went on his county tour, people complained to him that they were working, but they are not on payroll, and people who are not working are on payroll. Later did we know that it was the Director of Human Resource who was arbitrarily putting people on payroll for his own benefits”.
“After the investigation, he was called today and admitted to senior staff of putting two employees on the payroll and we know that it is not true.
“We have a list of more than 46 persons that were added to the payroll. And we know that he added even more. Other employees have been complaining that they are working, but their names are not on the payroll”.
Mr. Kayea’s dismissal is in line with the Civil Service Standing Orders of 2012, Chapter 4, Section 2, subsection 4.2.2d & h, Kromah said.
The Civil Service Standing Orders of 2012, Chapter 4, Section 2, subsection 4.2.2d & h states that: “When a case of misconduct or general inefficiency is brought to the attention of an Agency Head or the Director-General, disciplinary proceedings shall be initiated only after the employee or officer concerned has been given adequate opportunity to exculpate himself.
Also, 4.2.2 states that “If an employee fails to exculpate himself, ” that person may be Suspended or dismissed.
Mr. Kromah, however, disclosed that authorities of the Ministry of Internal Affairs will further decide on the prosecution of Mr. Kayea for the alleged acts committed.
When contacted via telephone, Mr. Kayea denied the allegations, teaming it as “false and misleading”.
He explained that eight names were submitted to his office by authorities of the ministry to be added on the payroll, but the directive was not signed by both the Deputy Minister for Administrative and his Assistant.
According to him, those names were submitted by one of the statutory superintendents of Sinoe County.
“It was eight persons we added based upon the document that was submitted to the ministry by Superintendent Annie Topleh. It was the Deputy Minister for Administration who forwarded the document to us”.
Mr Kayea, however, challenged authorities of the Ministry to provide evidence of the checks of individuals salaries he was receiving, or the names of those he placed on the payroll.
According to him, the IAA report “wrongly captured” employees working in the leeward counties.
“I don’t know these people. How will I connive with them to receive kickbacks? If they are saying that I was engaged in payroll padding, let them provide the names of those checks I have been receiving”.