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Conmen posing as KNBS staff fleecing Kenyans, warns government.

The government has issued an alert over fraudsters fleecing the public millions of shillings under the pretext of offering them jobs as enumerators in next year’s national population  census exercise.

Nakuru County Commissioner Joshua Nkanatha said detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations were trailing suspects who have been posing as officials of the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) and conning job seekers.

“Every eligible Kenyan has a right to employment in the public service whenever such opportunity rises without bribing or giving out incentives.

The Kenya National Bureau of Statistics has not advertised or offered any job with regard to the forthcoming national census,” said Nkanatha.

Speaking when he presided over this year’s African Statistics Day Celebrations in Nakuru, the administrator warned that any public servant found to be working in cahoots with the conmen would be summarily be dismissed and arraigned before court.

KNBS Senior Statistician Geoffrey Otieno who represented the Director General at the event said the national census would be held in August next year and that there were no plans currently to hire enumerators.

“We have also received numerous reports that conmen are reaping millions by purporting to offer nonexistent positions of census enumerators. I want to warn Kenyans that we will openly advertise for the positions before hiring enumerators in June next year. The exercise will be conducted in August. Any person soliciting money must be reported to authorities,” said Otieno

Nkanatha warned impostors that detectives had gathered crucial leads about cartels and criminal elements that were facilitating the syndicate.

He said it was a matter of time before law enforcement personnel catch up with fraudsters.

He observed that form four leavers and fresh graduates from colleges and Universities and their guardians were prime targets of the fraudsters.

The administrator urged the public to report individuals purporting to offer public sector jobs in exchange for money.

During the occasion, County Statistical Officer Peter Kamau said efficient use of statistics was key to checking corrupt activities in both the private and public sector.

“Accountability and transparency in use of public resources requires proper auditing and planning which is all about statistics. Reliable and high quality statistics ensure that procurements are not overpriced and that due wastage in public projects is averted” observed Kamau.

This year’s theme was “High quality Official statistics to ensure transparency, good governance and inclusive development”.

He said comprehensive frameworks should be established to monitor all flows of economic, social and environmental statistics, a situation that can track and stop illicit financial flows that fuel corruption.

“Reliable statistics help governments in formulating good governance policies. This leads to political stability and stronger accountability. It reduces and eradicates violence, establishes the rule of law and reins in levels of corruption” noted the County Statistics officer.

Kamau said in prioritizing welfare of citizens both the public and private sector have to rely on high quality statistics to develop sound economic, social and environmental; policies.

 By Anne Mwale

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