Over 9000 workers to be deleted from gov’t payroll

The Ministry of Public Service has been undertaking quarterly review of the payroll of Ministries, Departments, Agencies, and Local Governments, except Agencies that maintain their payroll.

Following the outcome of the special audit of the payroll of public officers by the Office of the Auditor General, the Ministry of Public Service is to delete 9,835 public servants from the government payroll, to ensure efficiency and integrity.

The Ministry of Public Service has been undertaking quarterly review of the payroll of Ministries, Departments, Agencies, and Local Governments, except Agencies that maintain their payroll.

Hon. Grace Mary Mugasa, the Minister of State for Public Service revealed that the reviews established several irregularities in payroll management, which prompted the Ministries of Public Service and that of Finance, Planning and Economic Development to recommend a comprehensive special audit of the payroll.

After carrying out a thorough audit and verification of government workers, in its findings of the audit, the ministry revealed that 9,835 workers were not fit to stay on the government payroll.

Out of the 9,835 government workers, 1,975 were not verified since they did not meet the verification requirements, 2,054 were transferred, absconded from duty, or died, whereas 3,824 workers were transferred, absconded from duty or died but remained on the payroll.

Meanwhile, 1,982 workers who did not show up were categorized as ghost workers, altogether totaling 9,835 workers who will be deleted from the government payroll effective this month.

Addressing journalists at the Uganda media center, Minister Mugasa explained that, “the main objective of the special audit was to establish the credibility of the Government of Uganda payroll, confirm the actual number of employees in the Public Service, estimate the payroll budget for the financial year 2023/2024, evaluate payroll management systems and make appropriate recommendations.”

She added that in their findings, 338,966 were fully verified and thus recommended for retention on payroll, 24,757 were partially verified and thus recommended for temporary retention on the payroll, whereas 1,886 were not accounted for but considered being officially absent.

“8,763 Individuals who are on temporary or short-term contracts have either been fully verified, partially verified, or unverified. Out of 12,231 employees on the payroll of Government Corporations or Companies, 11,668 (96.4%) were fully verified, while 261 (2.1%) including those who were away for genuine reasons did not show up,” she said.

According to the ministry, among other key findings by the auditor general, was that the retention on the payroll and continued payment of public officers who have either died, absconded, or have been transferred, caused the government to lose taxpayers’ money.

In its recommendation, the ministry noted that the wage allocation/ wage budget for FY 2023/2024 has been repurposed to cater to only verified Public Officers and those recommended for retention on the payroll, and the same principle has been maintained for FY 2024/2025.

“The Ministry of Public Service to continue with validation of Public Officers who missed the verification exercise, those partially verified and absent on official duty/ study or sick leave. This will be conducted at the National Archives and Records Centre, next to the Ministry of Health Headquarters along Lourdel Road from 11th March to 17th May 2024,” said the minister.

For the ministries, departments, and agencies that have been having ghost workers, irregular employment that resulted in loss of funds, is to be investigated by the Inspectorate of Government and Criminal Investigations Directorate.

The Ministry of Public Service is to continue verifying government workers who remained unverified or partially verified, during the special audit of the payroll by the office of the Auditor General

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