Following the confessional statements of fake workers on their involvement in the fraudulent activities in the Niger State Civil Service, the Government on Thursday disclosed that it has uncovered 333 certified “dead civil servants” who have been on the payroll of the state government for the past two years.
The government revealed that a whopping sum of N207 million was paid as salaries every month to fake civil servants in the state, amounting to about N5 billion in the past two years.
Making this disclosure in an interview during a live radio programme monitored in Minna on Thursday, the Chairman of the Staff Verification Committee set up by the state government to fish out ghost workers from the State Civil Service, Engr. Ibrahim Mohammed Panti, said the screening still continues and that more revelations are likely to unfold.
According to Panti, who is also the Commissioner for Works, those mostly involved are Account Officers and other staff from the state Ministry of Health, adding that they are among the 80 civil servants sacked last week by the government.
He said: “Out of the purported 27,000 civil servants on the payroll of the state government, only 15,907 of them have been discovered to be our genuine workers so far.
“There are 3,923 workers from different Ministries still having pending issues and are still being investigated.
“These set of people had entered the state civil service with fictitious certificates and their names found on the payroll of the state.
“Within the last two years, 333 dead civil servants who had been certified dead are still drawing salaries from the state government and all these fraud must stop.”
Furthermore, Panti said 1,029 Civil Servants whose names are on the payroll are yet to appear for screening, adding that by Thursday, which marked the end of the screening, they will be officially declared as ghost workers if they refuse to appear before the screening committee.
The Commissioner disclosed that all Civil Service rules were duly followed before they were dismissed.
“All those involved have given confessional statements on their involvement in the fraud and officials of Labour in the state are aware of this development,” Panti remarked.
He added: “Besides being dismissed, those found guilty will be prosecuted unlike before.
“The present revelations are too weighty to be swept under the carpet.
“We will not relent.”