Lots of ghosts
The country of Cameroon is trying hard to regain the top spot on the most corrupt list.
Yaounde - Cameroon has been paying some 20 000 ghost workers on its civil service payroll at a cost of millions of dollars a month, the central African country's finance minister said on Thursday.I like how Minister Abah Abah acts surprised. Did you know Abah is Haba backwords. 45,000 fake workers in a nation of 17 million. I thought the Philippines was bad.
"To our great surprise, we discovered that 20 000 of the people on the government wage bill were ghost workers," Economy and Finance Minister Polycarpe Abah Abah told a news conference.
"Of these, 13 000 were already dead and the remainder were civil servants earning a double salary," he said.
A joint study by the ministries of economy and finance and of public service also found 10 000 fake pensioners.
The discovery of the 20 000 fake workers comes on top of 45 000 already discovered during a census last August.
Some 50 000 civil servants were laid off in Cameroon in the mid-1990s under pressure from the World Bank and International Monetary Fund to reduce a 200 000-strong public work force.
Some of those fired managed to get their names back on the payroll with the help of corrupt colleagues, officials say.
Foreign donors made tackling rampant graft a condition for cancelling billions of dollars in foreign debt last year and President Paul Biya has embarked on a well-publicised anti-corruption crusade.
Cameroon ranked 138 out of 163 countries on anti-graft group Transparency International's 2006 Corruption Perceptions Index. In 1999 it was ranked the most corrupt
Also note this news. The publisher of an English language paper tried and convicted in absentia. What for? A series of stories on local corruption.
Don't worry Cameroon, you'll be back on top in no time.
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