Efcc Uncovers Another 37,395 Ghost Workers In Federal Civil Service

Source: thewillnigeria.com

SAN FRANCISCO, April 19 (THEWILL) – The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has revealed that it had detected 37,395 ghost workers on the payroll of the Federal Civil Service that the government lost about N1 billion to them.

The EFCC's acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu, made the disclosure in Abuja, on Tuesday, during an anti-corruption sensitisation programme organised by the commission for staff of works and housing sectors.

Magu said that apart from the widespread procurement frauds in Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), the issue of ghost workers was a source of serious concern to the commission.

“EFCC has uncovered 37,395 ghost workers in the Federal Civil Service and investigation is still going on,” he said.

“Our investigations have so far revealed that the Federal Government has 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.”

He advised civil servants to avoid any act that was in breach of public procurement, warning that violators risked terms of imprisonment and dismissal from service adding that the commission had established a Procurement Fraud Unit in order to handle the increasing number of petitions relating to violations of the Public Procurement Laws.

“In regard to procurement fraud, there has been a sharp rise in the number of petitions coming to the commission relating to violations of the Public Procurement Act (2007).

“That is what informed my setting up a Procurement Fraud Unit which has since commenced investigation of procurement fraud cases, with some of those cases 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 all MDAs of all forms of fraudulent activities.”

The Federal Government recently announced plans to probe no fewer than 23,306 federal civil servants, who have been accused by a panel of defrauding the government of millions of naira every month through an organised salary fraud after they were exposed by the Biometric Verification Numbers (BVN) exercise.

Story by David Oputah