, NAIROBI, Kenya, July 23 – The Nairobi County Government has revealed that it would need Sh12 billion to reduce its bloated workforce.
Governor Evans Kidero stated that 70 percent of revenue collected is used to pay workers’ salaries hampering development in the county.
He indicated that only 6,000 out of 15,000 workers are needed to efficiently run City Hall but are forced to continue to pay the rest because it is too expensive to retire them.
“As you know, currently there is a total of 15,000 workers. We had our 11,000 together with 4,000 workers devolved from the Central Government. The number of workers we need is only 6,000 so we have 9,000 workers whom we do not need but we have to pay them since we really do not have the money to retire them,” he said.
He stressed the need for a rationalisation exercise to balance between the revenue earned and development expenditure.
“These are workers who we do not need. If we can retire them, then we will be able to balance the recurrent expenditure, payroll and development. There is need for rationalisation to make sure that we only have effective workers in Nairobi is key. We cannot send people away and not pay them,” he explained.
Two months ago, City Hall suspended hundreds of employees as it embarked on a clean-up of its payroll and the removal of ghost workers to trim its wage bill.
The workers had been suspended and asked to report to their line managers once very week to help with the probe on how they joined the payroll, which accounted for 44.7 per cent of the 2013/14 budget of Sh28.6 billion.
The suspensions followed an audit by consultancy firm PriceWaterhouseCoopers conducted in 2012 and a workers’ headcount last year which revealed that City Hall was losing more than Sh100 million every month in salaries paid to more than 2,000 ghost workers.
Some of the workers were suspended on grounds that their ID numbers were being used to make remittances to the National Health Insurance Fund by employees of other entities.
Others provided outdated identification documents by the National Registration Bureau.
Kidero had said that the process of right-sizing the workforce to the required level of 6,000 will start with a clean-up of the payroll and removal of ghost workers.
The audit had further revealed that the audit found that some workers appear on the payroll up to five times using the same names but different identity card numbers.