A job scam involving 838 cemetery keepers in the local government system, has been uncovered by the Ebonyi State government.
Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Mr. Samuel Okoronkwo, in Abakaliki, yesterday, said the 838 cemetery keepers, have been receiving consolidated Health Salary Scheme, CONHESS.
The Commissioner mentioned that investigation so far revealed that previous administrations employed about 838 workers as cemetery keepers even while there was no cemetery in the 13 local government areas managed by the state government. Which means, in reality, the cemeteries do not exist.
He said, “The only cemetery in the state is in Abakaliki and it is being managed by the Catholic Church, so what are the cemetery keepers doing. Why are they earning CONHESS?”
“So this people have no work schedule, they don’t go to work but take very high salary at the end of the month, more than those who are actually working. That is fraudulent and this government will not allow it to continue”, he added.
Mr. Okoronkwo assured that the affected workers will not be sacked but will be removed from the CONHESS and re-posted to other areas in the local government where they will be useful.
The Commissioner said a committee has been set up to look into the issue with members drawn from various Unions and government.
He however debunked rumours making the rounds that the state government had concluded arrangement to sack medical workers in the local government areas.
According to him, what the state government was doing was to find out the workers that are not health workers, but are earning salary under the Consolidated Health salary Structure (CONHESS).
Mr. Okoronkwo further stated that the Ministry will also embark on screening of certificates having discovered that many workers in the local government system have fake certificates.