In Ghana, the minister of public sector reform, Paa Kwesi-Nduom said the government would, by the end of January, complete the installation of the biometric clock system. He said the purpose is for government workers to clock in when they arrive at their workplaces and to clock out when they leave. He also said it would guarantee high productivity within the public sector.
Paa Kwesi-Nduom said the government wants to improve the conditions of work in the public sector to make it more efficient.
“Part of our public sector reform program is to improve what we call the conditions of work. That’s is the facilities that we use to work, the work environment, our own employee attitude and so on and so forth… What we needed to do was to put in time and attendance devices that would first enable us to track who comes in and when and to link it to the payroll system,” he said.
He continued,“ This would also eliminate paper work so that if you don’t come in, and because it is based on the biometric system, it uniquely identifies you and you cannot clock in for someone else. What it also does is if you don’t come in, you would not be paid for that day,” Kwesi-Nduom said.
He said the government also wants to address the problem of impersonation in the public sector.
“Secondly, you know we face this so-called “ghost workers” issue of people impersonating others of inflating the pay roll unnecessarily so with this system, because it uniquely identifies everybody. After sometime, we believe that it would g help us solve that difficulty as well,” Kwesi-Nduom noted.
He agreed that the reform is overdue but said that the government intends not only to achieve the objective of the reforms but sustain it.
“Yes it is overdue, but better late than never and it is the right time as part of a comprehensive public sector reform, including pay reform that we are implementing. And yes I do believe that this can be done successfully and it can be sustained,” he said.
Kwesi-Nduom explained the significant role the newly created ministry he heads would have on the public sector.
“We’ve never had the ministry of public sector reforms before, which I am hoping will transform itself to become the ministry that is responsible for the ongoing administration of the public services in general, which has disintegrated over the past two decades…it has the highest authority in the president backing it. We have involved parliament and we would continue to brief them on a quarterly basis and I believe we have the good will of Ghanaians at large,” he said.
Kwesi-Nduom assured Ghanaians living abroad that the government, as part of the public sector reform, would address the anomalies they encounter in the ports when transacting their businesses.
“That’s part of why we are putting the monitoring devices in all these areas so that our workers and also the customers know that what is being done is being done in public. And indeed we want to tell them that what is being done is being recorded on a twenty-four hour basis to ensure that we give our workers the chance of knowing ahead of time to be transparent in all they do. And we hope it will minimize loses, it will minimize bribery and will let the work go on faster,” he said.