Korane defends staff lay-offs

Garissa governor Ali Korane has defended the ongoing staff layoffs at the county saying it is based on a report by the public service board.

In a press briefing on Tuesday, at his office, Korane said in the report, the board recognized 6,350 staff members as legitimate and subsequently, employees of the Garissa county government.

The governor’s reaction follows a series of demonstration for the past two weeks in which employees who had been laid off accused Korane of carrying out an illegal exercise meant to intimidate them.

Korane said that employees who were left out by the board ‘do not exist’.

The numbers who were left out do not exist. It’s the board who said they don’t recognize them. We don’t know where they work, their identity and we have nothing to do with them, Korane said.

The governor however noted that the staff list will be subjected to a fresh scrutiny by a professional human resource audit firm. The county will this week advertise for the same.

Korane pointed out that the list consists of staff of the former defunct Garissa municipal council, both the Ijara and Garissa county councils who were absorbed into the county government.

Another group is those who were seconded from devolved departments that include water, public work and health among others. Also in the list are those who were employed procedurally by the county public service board and under the delegated authorities to the relevant departments.

However, he said there were other deep seated illegalities in the report that warranted the further audit that we shall be undertaking.

We want to establish whether the jobs they hold really exist and or whether the job groups they hold are legitimately in line with the public service cord of regulation as prescribed in the scheme of service for the various categories, said Korane.

On ‘Ugatuzi na Kazi’ programme, Korane said that though a good idea, it was poorly implemented.

He said the public service board disowned the programme through various correspondence with former governor Nathif Jama, noting that it was ‘illegitimate’.

There were correspondence on the same as early as March this year, and another in June. There is also an audit report from the auditor general questioning the programme and an ongoing investigation from EACC, Korane said.

This is one programme that was the most abused. Out of 1,600 employees, only 700 existed while the remaining 900 were ghost workers who only existed in the minds of those God knows who, he added.

Korane said the revelations by the public service board report that over 6,200 workforce had no office to report to and another 900 ghost workers earning from the county’s public coffers among other irregularities ‘are unacceptable’.

Source: Kenya News Agency