Niger State discovers N672m paid to ghost workers, others to fictitious workers monthly.

Tunde Bolaji – Minna.

Niger state government has claimed that it has discovered over N672 million monthly payment to ghost workers and other millions of naira to fictitious salary earners in the civil service thereby causing the delay in the payment of June salary in the state.

Chairman Salary Management Committee and Commissioner for Works and Infrastructural development, Engr. Ibrahim Panti disclosed this while speaking on the reasons behind the delay of salary payment for the month of June in Minna.

He lamented over the high level of corruption and its tendencies in the civil service in the state as 98% of allocation goes in to salary payment leaving with almost nothing for the development of the state warranting the on going screening exercise

Engr. Panti who was optimistic for getting results from the screening revealed that 30% of each numbers of group invited for screening were never seen during the exercise, adding that fake a claimed certificates were further discovered from the exercise.

He said that “for example out of 1,000 invited between 600 to 700 came for the actual screening, while 100 we saw 70 or less, out of 1,451 persons screened 461 is on hold, 21 of them were retirees and rejected while 259 did not appear for the exercise”.

“About 36,000 lists of civil servants was presented to the committee, when we started the screening we bring it down to 27,000 and again to 25,000, we later discovered different serial numbers with the same BVN, repeated names with different bank accounts and fictitious allowances and salaries” he stated.

He assured that those found wanting will surely face the wrath of the law according to the civil service rules and regulations as appropriate recommendations would be made to government in its report on financial misappropriation of public funds.

Panti further revealed that the exercise was going smoothly despite threats from some quarters however can not be deterred from doing the right thing, added that some of those involved have started putting up their designation but they will be hunted and brought to book no matter their position.

He hinted that some of them had run to traditional rulers for intervention, blackmail, gone dark and hypocritic but reassured to maintained their stand of ensuring that the perpetuators as well as their collaborators are fished out soon next for prosecution accordingly.

Responding to why junk of money goes to the politicians hence after four or less years in office acquired much money and wealth, he denied by saying that in May 2019 he had an opportunity to see that Niger government received federal allocation of little above N3 billion, meanwhile, the civil servants took N2.7 billion only about N50 million goes to the appointees and politicians.

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