SECTIONS

Transition body welcomes audit as counties unearth ‘ghost’ workers

By ROSELYNE OBALA

County governments have been tasked with auditing their staff as it emerges that many employees currently on payroll are non-existent.

Though this is the mandate of the Transition Authority (TA), the Chairman Kinuthia WaMwangi said that they asked governors to undertake the exercise in their counties.

A staff headcount is presently underway in the 47 counties to establish the number of employees.

Human resource capacity is among the issues putting the national and county governments at loggerheads.

Mr WaMwangi admits that even as the county governments undertake a staff audit, the authority will do the validation once they are through with the process.

“The national government will continue to handle the payroll of county staff for the next six months before transferring the function to the counties,” confirmed the TA chair.

He said what the governors are doing now will enable them get rid of those who were not genuine employees of the defunct councils. “This is the reason why the national government will continue with the management of the payment,” he stated.

WaMwangi assured employees that TA was addressing the matter, while making a reference to recent threats by doctors to go on strike next week over the standoff on the transfer of functions by the national government to counties.

“Doctors will be paid. There should be no cause for alarm. The transfer of functions will be done in a systematic manner,” he assured.

Governors have however revealed that many employees are earning salaries without working in their counties.

Counties such as Garissa, Wajir, Bomet, Nairobi, Mombasa, Elgeyo/Marakwet, Bungoma and Kiambu lashed out at the Government for trying to retain the status quo.

Authorise payments

Governors Nathif Jama Adam (Garissa), Ahmed Abdullahi Mohammad (Wajir), Isaac Ruto (Bomet), Ken Lusaka (Bungoma) and William Kabogo (Kiambu) argued that counties need to kick off with clean payment registers.

“We discussed this matter at the summit where we deliberated that the national government continues handling the payroll as they deal with the issue of ‘ghost’ workers,” noted Mohammad.

He disclosed that in Wajir County there 100 employees on payroll yet they have either be transferred or working with international organisations in neighbouring Somalia.

Nairobi governor Evans Kidero said he has already removed 500 ‘ghost’ employees in the system. “The auditing is ongoing. We have already identified 500 whom we have removed from the system,” he noted.

Adam noted that in his county already they have identified over 200 people who are not employees but are on the payroll.

Lusaka said so far they have discovered 88 people whose documents do not exist, eleven who are on salary but do not exist while others are earning allowances.

Kabogo and Ruto have also disclosed that they have ‘ghost’ workers and indicated that they will not authorise their payments.