The Director, Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System (IPPIS), Olufehinti Olusegun, says the Nigerian government saved over N206 billion in salaries of federal civil servants during the 2017 and 2018 fiscal years.
Mr Olusegun made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday. He said this was achieved through blocking financial leakages of ghost workers.
He gave the breakdown as N76 billion in 2017 and N130 billion in 2018, adding that the current administration of President Mohammadu Buhari had helped sustain the policy introduced in 2007.
He said the administration, through the offices of Accountant-General of the Federation and the Minister of Finance, ensured that all the 512 Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and their 740,000 workers were properly streamlined into the IPPIS.
He said from 2015 to date, the Federal Government, as part of the gains of the IPPIS, had been able to employ more than 70,000 new workers into the federal civil service.
He revealed that the Federal Government also had given the deadline of March for all MDAs to join the IPPIS or have their salaries stopped.
“ What we have been able to achieve in IPPIS from 2015 to date is due to the political will of the current administration, most especially from the president himself.
“He has been able to bring in the Nigeria Police, the NSCDC, the immigration and the prisons into IPPIS, unlike what it used to be; in fact, we just finished capturing the military.
“The kind of support we have enjoyed from the Office of Accountant-General of the Federation, former minister and current minister of finance, has been so tremendous,” he said.
He, however, identified lack of infrastructure and inaccurate information being supplied by civil servants as parts of challenges facing the policy.
“It has not been without challenges; we have challenge of infrastructure and in terms of capturing. people do not seem to be bothered about the information that is supplied.
“Where your bank account number is not complete or correct, there will be a problem because you will not get your money. Where your date of birth is not correct there will be a challenge too,’’ he said.
The director said there were ongoing moves to form a synergy with state governments towards domesticating IPPIS in their domain for effective accountability and elimination of ghost workers.
He also urged those MDAs yet to join the IPPIS to do so in time so as to help the government achieve its dream of sanity in the salary payment policy.
IPPIS is an Information Communications Technology (ICT) project initiated by the Nigerian government to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of payroll administration for its Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).