Soludo’s Govt Uncovers 59 Dead Persons, 40 Retired Staff, People Living Abroad, Earning Salaries

The Anambra State Government has uncovered no fewer than 59 dead persons, 40 retired staff, including those presently working in two tertiary institutions as well as those who have relocated abroad, still earning salaries in the state’s local government system.

Naija News reports that the Chairman of the Anambra State Local Government Service Commission, LGSC, Vincent Ezeaka, made this known on Friday while speaking with journalists in Akwa, the state capital.

Ezeaka said the commission also discovered that 44 people were working with either fake OND, HND, BSc, NECO, or First School Leaving Certificate.

According to him, 427 persons who are not staff were also discovered to be on the local government payroll.

Ezeaka said the commission hired a retired permanent secretary to head the ongoing verification, stressing that the discoveries were made during a staff personnel audit launched to sanitize the state system.

He said some Deputy Directors and local government Treasurers have also been sacked for fake certificates.

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The Chairman added that the commission would finish the investigation, and those caught would face the full wrath of the law in accordance with the civil service rules.

He said, “Before the commencement of the verification exercise, we wrote all the 21 local government areas, asking workers to voluntarily resign if they have issues with their certificates. We assured them that they would be granted amnesty, but that if we have to spend time and money to fish them out, we would dismiss them.

“Based on the letter, their union, NULGE begged that they would go round and convince workers to submit themselves provided they would be protected. After some time, on June 20, they brought 40 names of staff and their profiles and pleaded that those staff be demoted, instead of outright sack. We wrote the governor to grant them disciplinary procedure amnesty.

“Some of them suddenly applied for voluntary retirement, but we refused because you cannot cheat government and want to retire formally.

“Out of 320 that were verified, only 110 since February this year, have been able to come out to prove themselves as workers and we have restored their pay and till today, 220 have not shown up.

“Apart from this discovery, at the end of May 2024, something dramatic happened. We descended on the certificate racketeering cartel within the local government system.

“We set up a committee which came up with report of people with suspicious certificates working in various local government areas of Anambra State and we then set up a screening committee that indicted so many of them.

“Those indicted were identified and we started investigating the certificates they presented to the committee and went as far as going to the universities whose certificates they brandished. Out of the 20 persons who tendered Imo State University certificates, we have screened 14 so far and discovered that six out of the 14 were fake certificates.

“It is our duty to sanitize the system in line with the mandate given to us by Governor Chukwuma Soludo so that the genuine workers who sacrifice their time and energy could get value for their service and not looters who do not contribute anything to the development of Anambra state.

“We are going to finish our investigation and those we caught in this unholy act will face the full wrath of the law in accordance with the civil service rules.

“The ongoing staff and certificate verification committees are not for any witch-hunt, but purely to sanitize the system”.

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