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Truth About Pay Out

Truth About Pay Out
Naipote Katonitabua.
October 08
10:59 2015

Expressions of interest had been sought in 2010 and 2011 from independent accounting firms to provide payroll services for payment of salaries to Government ministers.

The country’s top five accounting firms that submitted their expressions of interest were: Ernest & Young, KPMG, PWC, Aliz Pacific and G. Lal and Company.

The acting Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister Naipote Katonitabua, in a letter to Public Accounts Committee chairperson, highlighted the reason why salary payment of Government ministers had been outsourced.

Mr Katonitabua stated: “The contracting out of payroll service was deemed necessary at that time to create efficiency and maintain confidentiality of personal information given the political and administrative climate at that time”.

Upon receipt of expressions of interest and after a thorough evaluation of all EOIs, Aliz Pacific was selected for the provision of payroll service.

Aliz Pacific provided standard payroll services comprising fortnightly calculation of salaries for all of the Ministers and submit the schedule of calculation to the Permanent Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister for his approval.

The letter further stated: “Upon approval of the schedule of calculation by the Permanent Secretary, the approved funds were transferred into a payroll trust account by the Permanent Secretary on a bi-monthly basis. Aliz Pacific was then responsible for making all the deductions and payments of these deductions to relevant entities and thereafter making the payments of salaries into the respective bank accounts of the Government Ministers. All payments were made on a bi-monthly basis.”

Aliz Pacific charged a one-off $3300 for the setup of the payroll history in January 2010.

Thereafter, Aliz Pacific charged $850 per month for the payroll service. Aliz Pacific received a total of $10,200 per annum – apart from the one-off setup charge. Given that Aliz Pacific only provided payroll service for two years- 2010 and 2011- the firm was paid a total of $23,700 which is inclusive of the set-up amount.

This amount is below the $30,000 threshold required for the calling of tenders at that time.

“We also wish to highlight that the amounts of salaries paid to Government Ministers remained the same even when the responsibility for the payment of salaries to Government Ministers was transferred from Aliz Pacific to the Ministry of Finance at the beginning of 2012. The amounts of salaries paid to Government Ministers remained the same until the promulgation of the Parliamentary Remunerations Decree 2014 in October 2014.”



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