Staff Audit: Oyo Govt Uncovers 41 Ghost Workers, 341 Others With Irregular Records Opt For Voluntary Retirement
By Henry Odeh
The Implementation Committee of the Oyo State 2019/2020 Civil/Public Servants Audit and Payroll Re-engineering/Validation Exercise has recommended the removal of 41 staff classified as “No Show” (ghost workers) by the consultants.
The consultants had indicted 602 officers and recommended them for removal from the payrolls but the Implementation Committee affirmed 41 ghost workers; cleared 40 others of any infraction; uncovered 10 deaths; 170 systematic retirements; and affirmed the option of voluntary retirement by 341 others with irregular records of service.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor ‘Seyi Makinde, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, indicated that the Implementation Committee had examined the report submitted by the consultants and also interacted with the affected officers before finalising the implementation model.
Messrs Sally Tilbot Consulting was, in 2019, engaged by the Oyo State Government to undertake employees and pensioners’ verification/validation and payroll re-engineering, tagged 2019/2020 staff audit.
Following series of reconciliations, the report of the consultants was received by the government on April 30, 2021, after which an Implementation Committee was put in place to fashion out the final implementation model.
The 13-member Implementation Committee, headed by Mr. D.O Olatunde, Permanent Secretary, Civil Service Commission, affirmed that “forty-one (41) officers established to be “No Show” should be removed from government payrolls immediately.”
The committee recommended that an administrative investigation be undertaken by the government to determine where the salaries of the “No Show” officers had been going.
The statement added that of the 341 who indicated their decision of voluntary retirement to the Implementation Committee, 290 officers had turned in their voluntary retirement letters, while the 24 officers who failed to take advantage of the two-month window have now been retired by the concerned agencies of government.
The Implementation Committee had put together its report in May 2021.
Messrs Sally Tilbot Consultants had, earlier in its report submitted to the government, indicted 602 workers and advised that they be removed from the payrolls.
The Implementation Committee, however, recommended that the government should affirm the resolve of 341 officers who opted to retire voluntarily following the discovery of irregular records of service in their files.
The affected officers are to be “helped to port into the pension payroll not later than two months after their respective notices of retirement,” the report stated.
According to the statement, the administration of Governor ‘Seyi Makinde had, in a painstaking effort, set up a number of reconciliation meetings to review the report of Sally Tilbot Consultants, which undertook a forensic analysis of civil/public servants between 2019 and 2020.
Afterwards, the 13-member Implementation Committee, headed by Olatunde was further put in place to fine-tune the final processes of its implementation.
The Committee, according to its report submitted to the government, had, however, recommended that 170 officers, who were found to have “retired systematically”
(retirement according to age or years of service) be removed from the list of 602 earlier recommended for sanction by Tilbot Consultants.
Ten (10) others who were found to have died were also removed from the list prepared by the Consultants, while another 40 officers were cleared and absolved of any offence.
The report read in part: “From the above, it is observed that from the 602 alleged officers, one hundred and seventy (170) had already retired systematically due to no particular influence of the screening exercise and ten (10) deceased.
“Consequently, the Committee agreed that out of the 602 officers involved in the report: Forty (40) officers should be absolved and allowed to remain on government payrolls; one undred and seventy (170) officers who had retired systematically should be allowed on pension payrolls; and ten (10) deceased officers should be paid their due entitlements.
It also agreed that: “three hundred and forty-one (341) officers that opted for voluntary retirement should be allowed to do so; forty-one (41) officers established to be “No Show” should be removed from Government Payrolls immediately; while the list of affected officers from Tertiary Institutions should be forwarded to their respective Governing Councils for necessary action.”
Besides the Permanent Secretary, Civil Service Commission, who chaired the Committee, other members include the Special Adviser, Economic Matters to the Governor, Prof. Musibau Babatunde; Special Adviser, Labour Matters, Comrade Bayo Titilola-Sodo; Permanent Secretary, Local Government Service Commission, Mr. Akin Funmilayo; Permanent Secretary, Service Matters, Office of the Head of Service, F.N Oladeinde; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Mrs. A.A Fasina; Acting Solicitor-General of the State, Mrs. Folabimpe Segun-Olakojo; Executive Secretary, State Universal Basic Education (SUBEB), Mr. O.J Adeniyi; Representative of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade (Mrs.) K.F Aiyedun; Representative of Trade Union Congress (TUC) Comrade Kola Badmus; Secretary, Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP), Oyo State Chapter, Comrade Olusegun Abatan; Director, Service Matters, Office of the Head of Service, Mr. Goke Adenrele and the Deputy Director (EMR&P), Office of the Head of Service, Idowu Mashopa.