One-month-old baby on Nigeria government payroll, receives salary

A one-month old baby, said to hold a diploma, was on the Nigerian government payroll in the Zamfara State, officials have discovered.

An AFP publication today November 3, 2011 culled by the Vanguard of Nigeria says the name of the infant was recently found on the payment voucher of a local government council in northern Nigeria during an exercise to flush out ‘ghost employees’ from a bloated workforce.

“In the on-going verification exercise of the payrolls … in the state we discovered that a month-old baby was among the employees of one local government who is paid a salary,” Garba Gajam, Justice Commissioner for Zamfara told the AFP late Wednesday.

“What is even more astonishing is that it was indicated in the payroll that the infant holds an ordinary national diploma,” said Gajam, according to the news wire, revealing that the discovery is a “widespread trend in the local government service where senior officials stuff payrolls with the names of their wives and children”.

In August the name of a five-month-old baby was found on the payroll of another local municipality, prompting an investigation, the publication said.

“And we have been receiving amazing revelations which point to the rot and abysmal level of corruption at the local government level,” Gajam said.

By Ekow Quandzie

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