Support staff, fake certificate holders face axe in review

President William Ruto addresses a gathering during the Third National Wage Bill Conference, 2024 at the Bomas of Kenya on April 17, 2024. 

Photo credit: Wilfred Nyangaresi | Nation Media Group

Thousands of support staff who constitute more than two-thirds of the 960,000 public service workforce, casual workers, and public servants with fake academic certificates will be the first casualties as the government moves to address the ballooning public wage bill.

This emerged on Wednesday as the 2024 National Wage Bill conference was concluded, with it a raft of resolutions that could shake Kenya’s entire public service, if implemented.

Among key resolutions made following the three-day conference was that all agencies in national and county governments should review their staff establishments to ensure the legally required match of skillsets.

Public service entities are required to have 70 percent technical staff and 30 percent support staff, but in its current composition, the service has more support staff than technical staff.

“The composition of the establishment itself is problematic in that it is seriously skewed towards support staff at the expense of technical and other core-function staff. Clearly, 83 percent of state departments have violated the recommended ratio of technical staff to support services,” noted President William Ruto.

Dr Ruto also noted that the proliferation of public servants with fake certificates had not only contributed to the worsening of services offered due to their lack of skills but also added to the high wage bill that is now unsustainable.

The President tasked the Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission (EACC) and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to apprehend culprits holding fake academics, viewing this as a quick win of removing unnecessary load on the wage bill.

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