Laikipia County government has rendered positions held by 172 of its workers redundant, after an audit carried by the County Public Service Board.
Speaking to the media on Thursday in his Nanyuki Boardroom, the Laikipia County Governor, Ndiritu Muriithi said the exit of the 172 workers would annually release Sh.1.143 billion from the wages and salaries which would be put into development projects in the across the County.
He said that after a detailed professional audit carried by the County Public Service Board in the last 24 months, the positions were found no longer tenable.
The governor at the same time announced that the County Government through approval of the County Assembly, had in this financial year budgeted Sh.190 million to cater for dues for the staff who have been rendered redundant.
Governor Muriithi said each of the 172 staff would be compensated with half a month’s salary for each year worked, be professionally counseled and trained to begin the new life.
He pointed out that process of identifying the untenable employees was conducted in accordance to the law, the principle of fairness and in a humane manner.
The County boss noted that in today’s world, many of the services required by customers were provided online and many roles played by employees in the previous years were no longer required due to the new technology.
“We no longer need dozens of messengers since we move files electronically. The nature of clerical officers who file has changed from manual to electronic and all staff have computer skills, so we no longer have typing pools, and mobile phones have greatly reduced the reliance on land lines and switchboards,’’ Muriithi said.
The 172 workers who have been identified as redundant are among the 3,179 total workforce of the Laikipia County Government.
Governor Muriithi noted that his government began reforming and streamlining the County Public Service two years ago, with an aim of ensuring that it was professional, efficient, productive, and responsive to the needs of the customers who were the local citizens.
“The reforms introduced a performance management system where all employees have to prepare work plans based on their department’s mandate,” he noted.
The County boss explained that Laikipia County Government has been gripping with a very high wage bill at 58.8 percent of the budget, which drained most of the resources for development.
He added that the County’s total wage bill was way above the 35 percent as stipulated in the Public Finance Management (PFM), and this exposed his administration to possible jail for breaking the regulation.
“Every major policy in Kenya today recognizes the need to reduce wages and salaries in order to increases development resources. It is demanded by the Constitution of Kenya, as well as the Public Finance Management Act,” Muriithi said.
He pointed out that the main mandate of the governments was to serve the citizens and not to employ huge untenable staff and cater for its salary.
By Margaret Kirera