Kogi uncovers over 3,000 bank accounts of ghost workers

Posted by News Express | 26 May 2016 | 3,557 times

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The Staff Screening and Verification Committee set up by the Kogi State Government said it had uncovered over 3,000 bank accounts of ghost workers.

Chairman of the committee, retired Brig.-Gen Paul Okuntimo, disclosed this to newsmen in Lokoja on Wednesday.

He said 113 bank accounts belonging to three civil servants were also uncovered.

He said that the committee identified a number of retirees who had been collecting pensions and at the same time drawing monthly salaries from the state government.

He added that many names of under aged persons were discovered on the payrolls.

He said the figures will definitely rise as the committee was just midway into the assignment.

Okuntimo said the committee frustrated attempt by a cartel in government agencies to use a member of the committee to perfect N20 million per month the cartel had been siphoning from government coffers.

According to the Chairman, the BVN has proved to be one of the major instruments the committee rely on in realising its terms of reference.

He said the committee had categorised all the workers screened so far into three groups of successful, controversial and failed.

He pointed out that the committee will be releasing the names of cleared workers in batches.

He listed Ankpa, Dekina, Okene, Idah, Adavi, Ajaokuta, Ibaji, Bassa as some of the local governments where the names of cleared staff will be released by May 26.

Okuntimo said the committee had no mandate to sack any worker, adding that it will at the end of the exercise forward its report to the state governor who has the final say on the recommendations.

He, however, stated that workers with forged certificates, fake letters of appointment and ‘ghost workers’ who had been collecting salaries from federal and the state governments will have to go.

“There are some workers that are genuinely employed but they don’t go to office to work at all and they have been collecting salaries for years. They are mostly in the Diaspora. We tracked them through their ATM withdrawals.”

Okuntimo said that attempt to rubbish the work of the committee was being masterminded by external forces but said that he would not give in to blackmail and intimidation.

He also said that he had no problem with the leadership of the labour unions over the exercise, saying that he was not in any way disturbed by some negative comments coming from the labour circle.

“Government and labour’s stand cannot be the same.

“While the labour is defending the sectional interest of workers, government is more concerned with general wellbeing of the people and the future of the state.” (NAN)

•Photo shows Kogi Governor Yahaya Bello.


Source: News Express

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