The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has expressed shock at the extent of identity fraud that has been uncovered on the government payroll, following a biometric audit with the Ghanacard by the Controller and Accountant General Department.
Addressing Internal Auditors at their 2022 Conference in Accra earlier in the week, Vice President Bawumia revealed that the audit discovered about 148,000 workers on government payroll whose identities did not match any Ghanacard, as well as 533 people, who were discovered to have triple identities, and possibly three accounts on the government payroll.
Suspicious and non-existent workers drawing salaries on government payroll are popularly labelled “ghost workers,” and addressing the case of those with triple identities, Dr Bawumia sarcastically wondered whether triplet ghosts exist.
“I have heard of ghost workers but never heard of ghosts who are twins or triplets,” said the Vice President, amidst laughter by the audience.
“That is a new one, but we will get to the bottom of the corruption with ghost workers on our payroll,” he added.
Expressing concern about identity fraud on the government payroll, Dr Bawumia said the canker is draining government coffers.
He, however, remained optimistic that the Ghanacard, which has been the bedrock of a robust identity system Ghana is building, will eventually deal with the situation and other forms of identity fraud and discrepancies.
Already, the Ghanacard has uncovered about 14,000 ghost names on the payroll of the National Service Scheme after a biometric audit.
Through the biometric audit at the National Service, the government is saving GHC 112m annually following the elimination of the 14,000 ghost names.