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South Sudan minister admits existence of ghosts on payroll

South Sudan’s Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Ruben Madol Arol on Wednesday admitted the existence of ghost workers on the government payroll.

 He said that corrupt government officials have piled up names of their dead relatives on the payroll, adding this is sabotaging efforts to extend services to the population which badly needs them.

 “As a matter of fact, across the country when payment is being done, there are some fictitious names in the payroll, secondly, some people died several years ago but their names still remain in the pay sheet, and thirdly there is a practice of replacing dead people with their relatives,” Arol said during workshop for civil servants held in Juba.

Agok Makur, the Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning said that the government is introducing the use of biometric system in payment of salaries to help weed out ghost workers.

“The important agenda we have as a government is reform agenda, the ministry of public service together with other institutions are working together to implement biometric system and this is the policy of the government,” Makur said.

“We are ready to put our hands together to implement biometric system, we are still knocking the door to reform all institutions, we need to reform our institutions and these reforms can help us to implement the peace agreement,” he added.

The Minister for Public Service and Human Resource Development Dak Duop Bichiok, said that the ministry is prioritizing public financial management reforms and institutional strengthening of human resource management to improve efficiency, effectiveness and productivity in public service delivery.

Bichiok added that the World Bank is funding the implementation of the public financial management and institutional strengthening project.

He reiterated the government’s commitment to establish more dynamics and responsive public sector, adding that the government is cleaning up government the payroll of ghost workers.

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