Sindh Information Minister Sharjeel Inam Memon said that nearly 26,000 “ghost” employees are working in various government departments, and that the public exchequer can save nearly Rs6 billion by removing them.
While talking to media personnel after inaugurating the “Sindh Employees Smart Card” at the Sindh Secretariat on Monday, Memon said that computerisation of data pertaining to government employees would discourage people from falsifying their identity. It would also allow authorities to trace the so-called “ghost” employees-people who are using someone else’s identity to work in government departments- or those who are working on double positions and getting multiple salaries and benefits.
Memon said that out of 410,000 employees were registered with the provincial government, 328,000 had computerised national identity cards (CNICs), while 73,800 were not registered with the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra). Meanwhile, salaries were being paid to 338 people who had died years ago. “We will conduct an inquiry into how these salaries are transferred into specific accounts, even though these people are no longer alive.”
The information minister added that 12,064 employees were receiving double salaries, as records showed that they were working on different positions. While giving an example, Memon said that if a clerk was working in the education department, he was, somehow, also being paid by the health department. Meanwhile, another 16,665 computerised national identity cards (CNICS) were found where employees had lied about their ages.
He appeared confident that the “Smart Card” would bring an end to the fraudulent practice. The card, which would be issued by Nadra, would allow employees to get their salaries, and also let retired people withdraw their pensions from automated teller machines of any bank.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 1st, 2012.