KRG Health, Education Ministries to Send Employees’ Lists to Baghdad for Payment

KRG Health, Education Ministries to Send Employees’ Lists to Baghdad for Payment

The Kurdistan Region’s ministries of education and health have started to prepare and audit the lists of their employees on the request of the Iraqi and Kurdish governments, a spokesman said.

Spokesman of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Health Ministry, Khalis Qadir said on Friday (December 29) that the audit and preparation of employees’ lists are being completed at the request of a committee established by Erbil and Baghdad to be sent to Baghdad for payment.

Qadir added the audit is based on the biometric system of the KRG payroll, which was put in place to provide concrete information on the identity of civil servants employed by the Kurdish government and to eradicate chances for individuals to take advantage of the old, manual method of payment disbursement.

“Although, Baghdad has not set a date to distribute the salaries of both ministries, we are working on that and we hope that the salaries for the month of December will be distributed,” Qadir said.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said during his weekly press conference on Tuesday that the central government has started to distribute the Kurdish salaries.

Abadi noted Baghdad had paid the employees of the KRG Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources after the Iraqi government audited the Ministry’s payroll.

The Iraqi premier added Baghdad has also started to audit the employees’ lists of the health and education ministries in the Kurdistan Region.

The KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani also said on Thursday that the region was ready to send the data of the ministries of health and education to Baghdad on the basis of the biometric system.

KRG had introduced a new electronic payment system last October designed to modernize the region’s current method of distributing wages to government employees.

The system was set up to address the issue of “ghost employees,” and to keep track of the names and spending on the KRG’s payroll. According to KRG’s new biometric system, the number of Kurdish employees is now 1,249,481, down from 1.4 million.

Salaries for KRG employees have been plagued by delays since 2014 and Kurdish authorities have repeatedly said they cannot make payments due to a number of crises affecting the region.