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BIOMETRIC REGISTRATION CAPTURES 12,500 GHOST WORKERS ON GOVERNMENT’S PAYROLL

Devolution Cabinet Secretary - Anne Waiguru

Devolution Cabinet Secretary – Anne Waiguru

The government has announced that over 12,500 names of government employees who failed to show up for the biometric registration have been considered as ghost workers and will therefore be removed from the payroll at the end of  this month.

According to Devolution and Planning Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru, only 160,012 people turned up for the drive out of the 172,522 employees on the government’s payroll.

“In the wake of these developments, the steering committee has directed that both the national and county governments stop with immediate effect the salaries of the 12,510 who have failed to show up,” Waiguru said.

Once the over 12,500 names are erased from the government’s payroll, the Civil Service will save at least Sh 1.8 billion.

The report also revealed that about 300 officers were older than the official retirement age of 60.

Waiguru also announced that the exercise, whose first phase was expected to be done by the end of this month, might take longer because of challenges in establishing the validity of those who are about to retire as some employers have presented documents with varying dates of birth.

Co-chair of the steering committee and Kisii Governor, James Ongwae, said that a conclusive report will be released in February 2015.

President Kenyatta launched the biometric registration programme targeting civil servants at both the national and county government levels, on September this year, as an effort to weed out ghost workers and control the country’s ballooning wage bill.

The process required for all civil servants to physically present themselves at identification centers with their original identity cards, duly completed biometric data forms, original academic papers and professional certificates and letters of first appointment.

Recent statistics indicate that Kenya’s public sector wage bill has mounted to a level of 13 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).  According to the last budget the wage bill stood at Sh 458 billion, accounting for 43 per cent of the national budget but due to the huge cost of devolution the current wage bill has risen to Sh 630 billion.

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