City Hall Audit Exposes 4,200 Ghost Workers
The payroll crisis at City Hall could be deeper than initially thought after it emerged that more than a third of its 12,000 workers are either dead, inexistent or serving on forged papers, Business Daily Africa reported. In the first hint of the findings of a PricewaterhouseCoopers staff audit carried out in February, Town Clerk Philip Kisia said on Thursday there were 4.215 illegal workers who would be cut off from the payroll. The move would save the council some Sh2.5 billion annually, bringing it closure to financial independence. The council has a revenue base of Sh10.2 billion but salaries take up Sh7.2 billion, making wage bill trimming a key plank of any efforts aimed at enhancing service delivery. The council had a budget of Sh9.9 billion for the current financial year and owed creditors Sh31 billion, pointing to insolvency. With salaries taking up 73 per cent of the budget, City Hall has been unable to fund expansion or upgrade physical and social amenities like water, schools, health centres, sewerage works and garbage collection at the rate demanded by the rapid population growth. Mr Kisia said about 3,000 employees were found not to have enrolled for the council-sponsored medical cover, suggesting they were ghost workers. The failure to use the cover – which is a treasured fringe benefit in work places – was seen as a clear indication that something was amiss with the past employment practices at the organisation. Read more.