Mansa, February 14, 2015, ZANIS – The Ministry of Finance is concerned about the lack of knowledge in the processing of documents for officers retiring from the public service by most accounting staff in provinces.
The Ministry has observed that most accounting staff at provincial centres did not understand how to process important documents such as the casualty certificate and computation of interest on loans therefore requiring immediate orientation to avoid loss of revenue by the government.
ZANIS reports that this came to light yesterday when a team of accounting staff from the Ministry of Finance in Lusaka made the observations at a meeting to orient both new and old staff at the provincial accounting unit.
Ministry of Finance Senior Accountant Evaristo Chifumbano is leading a team of accountants from the Ministry in Luapula province to re-orient the Accounting staff in the Unit on the procedures to follow when compiling the casualty certificate and the need to complete the loss reports.
He said it had been observed that there was an increasing number of missing documents for clearance of officers retiring from the service because files sent to Lusaka did not usually contain all the required papers .
Mr Chifumbano said the ministry felt that it was important to follow the accounting staff in the provinces and explain to them how the documentation should be done in order to improve the situation and save time on sending the files back to Provinces for missing documents.
He said the computation of interest on loans for affected retiring officers were sometimes being applied for the whole period instead of just being applied for one month.
The Senior Accountant said in some cases, the employee number could be different from the person’s file who is retiring and for others who could have lost government property without it being captured on the casualty certificate.
Mr Chifumbano added that it was important to address the challenges arising from such lapses so that the system improves in the delivery of service in the public sector.
And Luapula Province Deputy Permanent Secretary Joyce Nsamba has hailed the Ministry of Finance for sending staff to Provinces to orient the newly employed officers and re-orient the old ones on proper documentation of relevant information required to clear government workers upon retirement.
She said it was important for staff to be oriented in the processing of documents for retirees because certain documents were not being filled correctly and sometimes loans and salary advances which they got while serving were not being captured in the system.
Ms Nsamba said people that had lost government property while serving needed to pay back because it was a loss on the part of the state.
She added that she was happy that the officers had come to equip the accounting staff so that government procedures should be followed religiously.
She acknowledged that a lot of government property has been lost through such lapses which was not fair as government procedures ensure that documentation was up to date in order to safe property.
Ms Nsamba appealed to the accounting staff in the Province to appreciate the advice and knowledge that will be shared with them for the improvement of documentation in the public service.
She added that the visit was timely and beneficial because it was happening at the beginning of the year when there has been new staff joining the system in the Accounting Unit while others have been transferred to other districts and Provinces.