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Mak payroll audit flops as University managers disagree

FILE PHOTO: Makerere University

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Makerere University Directorate of Internal Audit has halted a planned payroll audit following a contradiction in communication from the top managers.

Late last month, Makerere University Vice-Chancellor Professor Barnabas Nawangwe asked the directorate to conduct an urgent payroll audit by June 7, 2019.  The audit according to Professor Nawangwe was in fulfilment of a directive of the Finance, Planning, Administration and Investment Committee –FPAIC of the University Council.

The two-day exercise was scheduled to start today June 5, 2019. But according to the messages seen by URN, the internal audit office of the university and the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration failed to agree on the method for conducting the exercise.

Patrick Akonyet, the acting Internal Auditor had asked all members of staff to carry their recent original appointment letters, valid staff identification card, facts about their jobs (including department, designation and current salary scale in payroll) and date of birth as in the university records.

But Professor William Bazeyo, the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration objected saying that the payroll audit did not require a headcount of staff.

“This is confusing so please staff members do not assemble to bring any documents. The internal audit has been guided on the details of the requirements and will use appropriate methods to carry out the exercise as required,” Professor Bazeyo says in his message to staff.

The exercise according to top management was to include among others, confirming the number of staff in each department and the movements of the staff to and from the payroll (new entrants) vis-a-vis those who have left the institution for one reason or the other including retired, resigned or dead.

It was also intended to assess the trend of payroll deductions for the last 12-months including Pay as You Earn –PAYE, NSSF contributions, and utilities. This included a review of remittance reports from Finance Departments to those organs.

The 2016 Visitation Committee to Makerere University advised the University Management to undertake a comprehensive review of its current Staff records and payroll with a view of eliminating Staff who have left and those that have been irregularly hired.

This was after the Task Force failed to establish with certainty the exact number of employees in the University. The probe had observed that some employees, especially cleaners whose services were outsourced were still on the University Payroll. And as a result, the University is making double payments.

The anomalies and conflicting figures produced by the university top managers prompted the visitation committee to conduct a student and staff headcount.

In their report, as of November 2016, Makerere University had about 3,186 members of staff on its payroll with the number of employees on the payroll averaging 3,238 for the months of March 2016 to November 2016. Of these 1,417 were academic staff, 1,468 were support staff whereas 279 were administrative staff

Further analysis by the Visitation committee revealed that these Staff had been recorded on Staff registers for more than one College but could not establish whether the said Staff were not obtaining double salaries.

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