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Pay 2000 Computer System

Volume 409: debated on Friday 18 July 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) regular service personnel and (b) reservists have been affected by delays in payment of salaries, bounty and compensation; and if he will make a statement. [118285]

[holding answer 12 June 2003]: We are not aware of any disruption or delays to the payment of salaries and other payments to members of the Regular Armed Services or mobilised reserve from the Royal Navy, Royal Marines or Royal Air Force as a result of Operation Telic. In my answer to the hon Member on 14 July 2003 Official Report, column 65W, I did recognise that some problems with Army pay had occurred associated with Pay 2000.

We are aware that difficulties over pay or allowances were experienced by a small number of Territorial Army personnel during their period of mobilisation. In most instances, these were the result of administrative delays in the processing and passing of key information to the Army Pay computer systems. Reports from units indicate that a small number of reservists had a short delay before payment of their Reservists' Hardship Allowance and Reservists' Standard Award because the paperwork had to be manually assessed and there were some instances of incomplete or missing paperwork.

For entitled mobilised TA personnel we are not aware of a delay in the payment of any entitled annual bounty, but pay statements detailing bounty payments are sent to the TA unit rather than the unit on which the mobilised reservists serves. As such there may have been delays in notification of the payment but not in the payment itself.

A lessons learned exercise is underway to ensure that where difficulties have occurred they are addressed in any future operations.