President Barrow with members of the Public Service Commission

(JollofNews) – President Adama Barrow of the Gambia has expressed disappointment at the poor salary scale of the country’s civil service.

He said Gambian civil servants are earning far less than those working in the private sector and his government will embark on reforms to promote democracy, fair play and establish a transparent and accountable system in the civil service.

He added that during the previous regime of Yahya Jammeh, a lot of money borrowed from private banks to pay salaries of civil servants have ended in private pockets of certain individuals.

Speaking at a meeting with members of the Public Service Commission (PSC) at his Fajara office, the president added that despite inheriting a difficult situation, his government’s priority is to stabilise the system and cut costs.

He said his administration will ensure the independence of the civil service to enable civil servants to effectively execute their duties.
The permanent secretary at the Personnel Management Office (PMO), Pateh Jah, said the Barrow administration is as part of its development agenda conducting institutional reforms, including a nationwide staff audit exercise.

He added that the staff audit exercise has been done and they are now analysing the findings to allow the relevant authorities to execute the necessary actions.

He added that preliminary findings revealed a number of  ghost workers who are still being paid.

Mr Jah said general observations indicate that some staff does not have the requisite resources to do the job and to respond to the call to improve service delivery.

“The system requires to be strengthened,” he said. “You cannot deliver when you don’t have people with the necessary skills and expertise to do the job. These are part of the challenges that they would be able to uncover during the exercises.”