‘No verification, no salary’ as ghost worker crisis persist – Zamfara govt

There is suspense as Zamfara state government insists on no verification no salary for the state civil servants following the detection of 4,972 ghost workers in the state civil service.

Intensive investigation carried out by Akelicious revealed that both the banks and courts are crowded with civil servants who are processing their bank verification numbers and court affidavits to enable them receive their December salaries.

According to the State Ministry of Finance, 4,972 workers were denied December salaries due to some irregularities discovered in the ministry, saying that the affected civil servants must produce their letters of appointments, last promotion letters, bank verification numbers amongst others before they could receive their salaries.

However, private investigation showed that a former chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in the state, comrade Ibrahim Kanoma and three other senior officers in the state Ministry of Information were also affected and could not collect their December salaries.

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According to information gathered at state ministry of information, the chairman has not failed in carrying out his official responsibility, pointing out that nobody could ascertain what really happened.

However, further findings indicated that corruption was deeply rooted in the state ministry of finance as five directors in the ministry have already been sacked as it was alleged that they were the arrowheads in the dubious business.

A source in the ministry hinted that some top officials normally add fake names and fake bank verification numbers in the payrolls and send to the banks after the payrolls must have been signed and approved and the money withdrawn from the state treasury.

The source further stated that these dubious top officials were Master planners, stressing that they have so many ways of embezzling government funds through dubious means.

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It could be recalled that recently, the state commissioner for finance, Hon. Rabiu Garba Gusau in a press conference lamented that the state government was losing a whooping sum of N216 million to ghost workers every month.

“We have so far detected 4,972 ghost workers and investigation is still on which I hope that many more heads will roll. Already five directors in the ministry have been fired” he added.

Our correspondent learnt that for decades, the state civil service has been operating on decaying system even before the present administration came on board.

A worker who does not want his name in print said the state civil service has been moving with the lowest ebb since the recent verification exercise began as most of the workers are concentrating on how to collect their December salaries.

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It is on record that former governor Abdulaziz Yari in an effort to flush out ghost workers in the state, retrenched over 20,000 civil servants, yet the amount the government was spending as salaries and allowances continued to escalate unabated.

According to a public commentator, Alhaji Ahmed Bakare, corruption in the state ministry of finance can never be stopped until harmony prevails, saying that the recent sack of the five directors can not make any difference until the government takes drastic measures to destroy such ugly system.

He noted that he has suggested ways to deal with this ugly development but the government poured scorn on his suggestions, stressing that government always take advice from cabals who are only for their own selfish interest.

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