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By Godfrey Olukya 17-10-2012

Over 6000 ghost workers have been identified by Zimbabwe government following it’s efforts to clean up government payroll.

The ghost workers have been removed from the payroll as investigations on how they came to be recruited are being carried on by police.

Recently, International monetary fund advised the government to clean up the payroll after suspecting that there were many ghost workers being paid.

The axing of 6,000 ghost workers from it’s payroll, has paved way for government to initiate a staff-monitored programme (SMP) which is supported by by the International Monetary Fund.

‘A good amount of money which has been being paid to ghost workers will now be put to better use. ‘said Zimbabwe bank official, Steven Mbabane.

Early this year, a member of parliament in Zimbabwe for Mutare West, Shuah Mudiwa, told Parliament that at least 25 million US dollars would be saved monthly if the ghost workers were removed from the government payroll.

A report from the Public Service Commission confirmed that some 6 000 irregularly employed youth officers have been removed from the payroll. The World Bank financed the payroll and skills audit that was undertaken by Ernst and Young (India) to flush out ghost workers.

Zimbabwe, like most other African countries is hit by unemployment especially of the youth. The biggest number of the ghost workers were reportedly youths and war veterans recruited just before the June 2008 presidential election and are supporters of President Robert Mugabe.

‘The youths and war veterans who have been struck from the payroll may cause chaos if not well handled’ said Diana Tshibala, a primary teacher. ‘They may resort to robbing in order to survive.’

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