Uganda stops paying more than 5,500 'ghost' civil servants

Thursday August 11 2016

By AFP

Uganda removed more than 5,500 suspected "ghost" civil servants from the payroll, a minister said Thursday, as it fights endemic corruption and fraud in the public sector.

President Yoweri Museveni promised a crackdown on corruption after being sworn into office for a fifth consecutive term in May, and the country has been the subject of frequent criticism from foreign donors over allegations of rampant graft.

Minister for public service Muruli Mukasa told AFP: "We are submitting a list of suspected fraudulent cases to police and the inspector general of government for further investigations and possible prosecution."

Of the country's 308,393 government employees, 5,586 were removed from the payroll, he said.

Mukasa added biometric data would be used to validate employees upon Museveni's orders.

The president has also called for "a clean payroll, lean public service and an effective one, and that's why these efforts are being taken," he said.

Corruption watchdog Transparency International ranked Uganda 139 out of 168 countries last year, while more than 80 per cent of Ugandans reported paying a bribe in the last year according to the organisation's latest data.

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