April 13, 2024

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Abia council wage bill no longer sustainable – Commissioner

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Abia council wage bill no longer sustainable – Commissioner
By Steve Oko
Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftancy Affairs,  Abia State,  Chief Christopher Enweremadu, has said that the increasing wage bill of council workers in the state was no longer sustainable. 
Ekweremadu who disclosed this during a press conference in Umuahia said Abia has no fewer than 40,000 workers in the 17LGAs.
He lamented that the wage burden of council workers in the state had continued to worsen due to the criminal activities of ghost worker perpetrators.
The Commissioner also hinted that the state  had uncovered the cabal responsible for illegal recruitment and promotion of council workers.
He however, did not reveal  the identity of the cabal.

“There is a cabal in local governments engaged in employing, posting, promoting and awarding arbitrary salaries to workers,’ he lamented.
He said government was determined deal with the syndicate and clean up the mess , hence the recent introduction of biometric data. 
The Commissioner who said Abia had lost so much to ghost worker syndrome vowed that government was determined to eliminate the monster. 
He cited an instance in Isiala Ngwa North council where it has been discovered that between N55 million and N60 million was expended monthly on salaries of 1,500 workers.
Enweremadu said government could no longer waste scarce resources on ghost workers and swore to deal ruthlessly with those perpetrating the syndrome. 
He said Abia had an overbloted workforce in local government system with over 40,000 workers, wondering where such labour population is hiding in the 17 LGAs. 
“It is immoral to use funds meant for genuine workers to pay ghost workers,” he fumed. 
The Commissioner said it was criminal for somebody to collect the salaries of a no -existent worker. 
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