Devolution and Planning Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru is joined by Kisumu Deputy Governor Ruth Odinga (right, seated) during the launch of the biometric registration for county staff at the headquarters in Kisumu Town on September 22, 2014. PHOTO | JACOB OWITI |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

Kenya's Cabinet orders probe of 12,000 ghost workers

Kenya's Cabinet has ordered police to investigate how 12,500 ghost workers ended up in the government payroll.

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The staff were unearthed during the just-concluded auditing of civil servants.

According to the Ministry of Devolution, which was carrying out the biometric registration, over 12,500 employees who are in the government payroll failed to turn up. They were sacked.

Now the Director of Criminal Investigations, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) and the Banking Anti-Fraud Unit have been instructed to move in and bring those involved in the scandal to book.

“Some officers in the government and other institutions have been colluding with outsiders to siphon funds through payrolls using fake names,” said the directive. 

The two-month audit, which was also rolled out to the counties, revealed that the government lost Sh7.2 billion annually to corrupt government officials. 

This amount is way much higher than the Sh1.8 billion estimated by President Kenyatta when he launched the audit in September to lower the ballooning public sector wage bill.

The government currently uses Sh458 billion to pay 172,522 people in its payroll against the current budget of Sh1.8 trillion, leaving little for development.

DEPLOYMENT TO S. SUDAN

It has taken several measures to reduce this amount including asking Cabinet Secretaries and head of parastatals to take pay cuts.

The Cabinet, which met on Thursday, also approved the deployment of 55 Kenyan civil servants to South Sudan.

The officers will provide technical assistance in strategic functions within ministries, commissions and local governments in the world’s youngest nation.


Credit: Daily Nation  

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