The Niger State government has decried the high level of corruption in the state civil service.
This followed the government’s discovery of over N672 million monthly payment to ghost workers and several millions of Naira to fictitious salary earners in the state payroll.
The chairman of the State Salary Management Committee and Commissioner for Works and Infrastructural Development, Engr. Ibrahim Panti, who disclosed this in Minna at the weekend, said the discovery was the reason for the delay in the payment of salaries of state workers for the month of June, 2020.
Panti lamented that 98 percent of the state allocation was usually used for salary payment, leaving almost nothing for the government to carry out developmental projects.
He said that in order to address the situation, the state government decided to conduct a screening exercise on the civil servants.
According to him, during the screening exercise, 30 percent of each group of workers invited for the screening never turned up.
He said that among those that even came, some were caught with fake certificates
“For example, out of 1,000 invited, between 600 and 700 came for the actual screening. 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,” Panti said.
The commissioner further stated that before the exercise, the committee was presented with a figure of 36,000 as the total number of the states’ workforce, but during the screening it came down to 27,000 and later 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 added.
He said that those found wanting would be dealt with according to the civil service rules and regulations as appropriate recommendations would be made to the government in its report on financial misappropriation of public funds.
He said currently, he and other members of the committee are facing threats from different quarters. He, however, vowed that despite the threats, the committee would not be deterred from discharging its duty to the state.
“Some of those involved have run to traditional rulers for intervention, resort to blackmail. But, we will maintain our stand by ensuring that the perpetrators, no matter their positions as well as their collaborators are fished out soonest for prosecution accordingly,” Panti said.
Join the conversation
SPECIAL REPORT: Displaced residents of Zamfara battle hunger, as underfunding derails Nigeria’s nutrition goals
On paper, Muhammad Zayyanu is seven years old. The quiet boy who looks shorter for his age could not recollect...
INVESTIGATION: N7.3bn paid for unnamed projects; how Nigerian govt spent N2.2trn in six months
Analysing nearly 3,000 payments made by various Federal Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) over the previous six months (January...
INVESTIGATION… Delay rocks Nigerian govt’s promise of N30,000 covid-19 relief for artisans, others
Before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in February, 2020, Chukwudi Okoroigwe’s daily earnings as a bus driver was hardly enough to cater to the...
INVESTIGATION… Ten years after, communities count losses as AfDB, Cross River govt abandon road project
Ten years after the Cross River State government and African Development Bank (AFDB) jointly awarded the Yahe-Wanokom-Wanikade-Benue border road for...
INVESTIGATION….N.3bn down the drain: Why water projects for Enugu communities don’t work
In this concluding part, ARINZE CHIJIOKE talks about some of the projects that are serving the people and how various WASH programmes have failed to tackle...