Monrovia - FrontPageAfrica has gathered that the government does not have money to pay health workers and has called on the World Bank to help in that regard.
But the World Bank Communications Associate, Michael Nyumah Sahr, through a text message clarified to the FPA that the policy of the World Bank does not permit the Bank to pay salaries of public sector employees. Deputy Health Minister for Administration, Dr. Edward Tolbert termed the information as false and misleading, saying the information is a rumor. He noted that the World Bank cannot pay the salary of individual health workers. He told the FPA via mobile Monday that the delay in health workers payment is from the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning. Minister Tolbert said the process for paying health workers has since been sent to the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning. The Director of Communications and External Affairs, Bernard A. Warrity could not deny or confirm the information when he was contacted Monday evening on the matter. Mr. Warrity promised to provide details later. The issue of health workers not getting their incentives and regular salaries is said to be getting serious as those assigned at various public health facilities have gone three months without receiving a penny. Health workers in Bomi, Grand Gedeh, Nimba, and Margibi Counties are said to be going through hell without an explanation from the Ministry of Health about the non-payment of their salaries. The health workers have expressed serious concern over the delay in payment with some threating protest action against the government. Health workers working in the counties have complained they are facing difficult times at home due to the lack of money. Many of them who spoke with the FPA preferred not to be named due to fear of being dismissed. “We are sincerely working for government, and the money we are making as BSc nurses is not much. The government was doing well after Ebola but we are now surprised since February we have not taken pay. Our incentives have not been given to us and we have families at home to take care of,” said a nurse who refused to call her name. Another nurse working for the government hospital in Grand Gedeh threatened to find a private job than working for government, saying her sacrifices she’s making is not being recognized by government. “I don’t want to call my name too because there are wicked people who hear us and tell our supervisors and they might dismiss us for what we are doing. And me I don’t want to have that record of dismissal in my file before it haunt me tomorrow. “It is bad to be working for three months without salary or incentives, how do they expect us to manage to take care of our family,” she asked.