14 April 2014

Liberia: GAC 'Targets 150' for Redundancy

What is considered as a very wild wind of hurricane is said to be blowing the across the General Auditing Commission (GAC),

gradually moving toward uprooting some of its employees under the guise of redundancy.

As this paper has gathered from the corridors of the auditing house, which has been an epicenter of unprecedented tensions ranging from varying developments, there is a serious uneasiness amongst employees in the wake of the plans being currently hatched by the administration to redundant about one hundred fifty employees of the 400 workforce there.

Under the law (the Act that created the entity), it should have as employees close to five hundred persons to enable it execute the mandate for which it was instituted several years back.

As enshrined in its Act, the auditing body is to conduct not less than 400 audits annually including institutions benefiting from Government of Liberia (GoL) subsidies.

This is to say that the GAC has to have a workforce in the range of 400 or above, and that anything short of the legal benchmarks is deemed a contravention of the GAC Act.

But instead of upgrading the workforce to meet legal requirements, GAC sources who confided in this paper claimed about 150 employees have been targeted for redundancy.

Reports which could not be independently verified said the administration is being pressed from outside to execute the redundancy plans which will allegedly affect directors and managers to a larger extent. What is likely to happen under the planned redundancy arrangement if executed, according to sources, is that new group of people could be brought in to take over as directors and managers of the various departments.

Under the "in-the-making arrangement," only four directors will be retained while the rest of the folks will be reduced to supervisors or analysts, sources hinted.

Currently, there are about eight directors at the GAC with more than two dozen managers.

Likely to be retained are Sylvester Jah, current Director of the Human Resources Department, also husband of Senator Clarice Jah of Margibi County as well as one "Bridge" Tolbert.

The redundancy plan is also said to be centered on adjustments in the salary structures of directors, some of whom are allegedly making fabulous salary as huge as close to US$8,000 per person.

GAC authorities could be reached up to press time yesterday. As per the Act that created it, it is only the AG that has clothed with the authority to speak on vital issues such as the issue at bar.

Reports of unsavory developments have been in the media sometimes now. It may be recalled that this paper reported similar story in which quoted sources as saying that the entity had planned mass dismissals of employees. According to the report at the time, targets for dismissal were mainly those suspected of being undercover agents of dismissed former Auditor Generals, John S. Morlu, II and Robert Kilby.

There is serious suspicion at the GAC that some employees are still holding loyalty to the former AGs.

About two weeks ago, President Ellen Johnson "Sirleaf commissioned new Auditor General and Deputy Auditor General.

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