Ghost Workers: Bauchi State Government Lied Half A Dozen Times

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Musa Azare

It is no longer news that Bauchi State Government has being conducting workers verification since the beginning of the year 2016. It is equally no longer news that the last time the administration of Governor Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar paid full salaries was December, 2015. It is on record also that various government officials including the Gov Abubakar himself, have intermittently dished out different figures of ghost workers uncovered during the verification exercise.

This article is set to unearthed the endless stream of lies by the administration of Gov. Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar regarding the ghost workers issue for the good people of Bauchi State to know the kind of leaders that are presiding over their affairs. It will also serve as a lesson to our dear people in future to carefully scrutinize candidates before electing them into public office.

On March 7, 2016, Daily Trust newspaper quoted the Accountant General of Bauchi State, Alhaji Abubakar Gabi to have said that, “Bauchi state government… has uncovered about 5,000 ghost workers in the ongoing civil service verification exercise….  and the exercise has enabled it to save N200million which was being siphoned by some individuals prior to the exercise.”

Two days later on March 9, 2016, Leadership newspaper quoted a statement issued by Yakubu Ibn Mohammed, Special Adviser to Gov. Abubakar on Media and Communication to have said that, “The Bauchi State Government… has uncovered 19,241 ghost workers and saved N797.46 million.” The statement added that, “…more than N1 billion would be saved monthly from the exercise.”

Five days later the Accountant General of Bauchi State, Alhaji Abubakar Gabi was quoted again by Vanguard newspaper of March 14, 2016 to have said, “We have so far discovered over 19,000 ghost workers while only 7,000 pensioners out of the alleged 14,000 pensioners have turned up for screening…”

And then on the same March 14, 2016 Gov. Abubakar’s Press Secretary Abubakar Al-Sadique wrote on his Facebook wall that, “…..nearly 20,000 ghost workers” were on government’s payroll, “…taking away about a billion naira monthly.”

Then came another shocker on March 30, 2016, this time around from Oga himself! In an interview with National Mirror shortly after he received the infamous “Best Governor Award” from Joseph Wayas and his team, Governor Abubakar himself put to lie all the previous statements made by his own officials about the issue of ghost workers. Hear him, “….we have discovered about 22,000 workers who are doubtful, I don’t want to say they are ghost workers, and I do not want to say we have discovered 22,000 ghost workers because it is give and take.”

The latest addition to the endless stream of lies concerning the actual number of ghost workers uncovered came just today, Monday, June 27, 2016 in the Punch newspaper. Oga himself is talking again, “During the exercise, we discovered 6,065 ghost workers on the payroll of the Bauchi State Government.” The governor also added that he “….could not disclose the amount so far saved from the past verification…”

So, what about the amounts of N200 million and N797.46 million earlier said to have been saved by the government? What about the government’s projection to be saving more than N1 billion monthly? Is this another lie by BASG?

A responsible government always admit its errors and usually follow them with an apology. BASG should admit that it lied to the good people of Bauchi State regarding the amounts saved so far from the verification exercise and the actual number of ghost workers it uncovered.

I am speechless, though mouth full of words!

A government that fails to control or regulate the outflow of its information from its own information power bank, is doomed to be caught lying. Virtually every government official in the administration of Governor Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar is a “spokesperson.” Many a times I read statements issued by deputy governor’s media aides but pertaining to the affairs of the governor or his wife. This gives room for conflicting statements and outright lies to be constantly served on the table of poor people Bauchi State. I keep saying that Bauchi State Government under Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar has the most inept media team or even none at all. What it has is just a retinue of overzealous noise makers and indecorous propagandists who have a penchant for reckless attack on anybody that dare to expose the inadequacies of their nonchalant boss. Many of them have reduced themselves to mere announcers of the governor’s condolence visits or attendance of marriage ceremonies.

There is still time to make amends if the governor so wishes.

Musa Azare…

Writes from Abuja..

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