The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has disclosed that the Federal Civil Service had more than 37,000 ghost workers. It was disclosed yesterday by the acting Chairman of the commission, Mr. Ibrahim Magu.
According to him, “EFCC has uncovered 37,395 ghost workers in the Federal Civil Service and investigation is still on. Our investigation has shown that the Federal Government lost close to N1 billion to these ghost workers. The figure will definitely increase as we unravel more ghost workers buried deep in Federal Civil Service payrolls,’’ Magu said.
“In regard to procurement fraud, there has been a sharp rise in the number of petitions relating to violations of the Public Procurement Act (2007). That is what informed my setting up a Procurement Fraud Unit, which has commenced investigation of procurement fraud cases, with some already in courts. Let me warn that civil servants found guilty under the Public Procurement Act risk terms of imprisonment, ranging from five to 10 years, and in addition, may face dismissal from service. The commission is determined more than ever before to rid MDAs of fraudulent activities.’’
Mr. Magu also announced the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission will place suggestion boxes in strategic locations so citizens could drop petitions of corrupt practices. He said the move will assist the commission in its war against corrupt practices.
Speaking in the same occastion with Mr. Magu, the Permanent Secretary for Works and Housing, Alhaji Abubakar Magaji, said that ministries, departments and agencies should be in the vanguard of compliance with public service laws and regulations. Magaji said: “It is rather sad that over time, the laws, regulations and standard practice governing the operations of the public service are being neglected and often abused, in many cases with impunity. The MDAs are expected to be in the forefront of compliance with extant laws and regulations, because they constitute the engine room of government. They are responsible for implementation of government’s policies and programs. Therefore, the success or failure of such policies and programs are on the shoulders of public officers.’’