Minister for Local Government Raphael Magyezi has dispatched a team of experts, to investigate fraudulent Local Government officials implicated in the Auditor General’s Report.
Yesterday, the audit report was handed to Deputy Speaker Anita Among by Auditor General John Muwanga at parliament.
The report indicated that the ministry of Local Government is full of ghost workers, totalling to more than 600.
The report further highlighted that 78 Local Governments paid a total of Shs1.12 billion to 635 staff who had either retired, transferred, absconded or died hence paying for services that were not rendered, causing loss of funds to Government.
The Audit also revealed 2,178 newly recruited employees in 75 Local Governments delayed accessing the payroll with delays ranging between 1-34 months, yet 407 employees in 17 Local Governments had not accessed the payroll by time of audit.
The team will analyse circumstances under which ghost workers in the Ministry were smuggled into the payroll system, costing government huge sums of money.
It will also be tasked with carrying out a systematic inquiry into the operations of various officials in Local Government ministry, who were implicated in the Auditor general’s report for having been involved in sneaking ghost workers into the payroll system.
Minister Magyezi said that his newly formulated committee will analyze the confusion in this Audit, and those arrested will face an iron hand of the law.
“As a responsible minister, I will look at the relevant districts, CAOs or town clerks and this will help us sort out this matter, basing on how each official is executing their government roles, such that we establish the major genesis of the fault,” Magyezi clarified.
“I would like to establish where the problem is, in which district and to also establish who is responsible. Failure to exucute duty is not for everyone. There are those who delivered, while others miserably failed. So those whom we will establish to have been involved in swindling public funds and failed to execute their roles will be dealt with according to the law. I have instituted a committee immediately, that will analyse this report in detail,” he added.
Shadow Minister for local government, who is also Woman MP for Wakiso district Betty Naluyima attributed the increasing number of ghost workers on the payroll to poor and untimely pay of public servants in various local governments.
“We should focus our attention on the genesis of the problem, rather than trying to diagnose the signs. We have to put ourselves in the position of being able to explain the malfunctioning of these local governments,” she said.
Naluyima added that local government workers ranging from councillor, who is responsible for overseeing operations, to district chairman, take considerably long without seeing their benefits, yet they are entrusted with billions of shillings.
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