By Omar Bah
The former mayor of the Kanifing municipality, Yankuba Colley has refuted allegations that the council under his watch was paying salaries to over 20 ghost workers.
The interim committee that took office when Colley’s term ended alleged that the council was D5 million in red and that out of 800 staff many were actually not reporting to work and that their daily revenue collection at the Serekunda Market increased from D35,000 to D55,000 representing.
But, speaking in a Standard exclusive, Colley said all the allegations were unfounded and that they were calculated “just to tarnish” his image.
He said it was not possible for the council to be paying salaries to ghost workers because it was going through periodic auditing.
“They said we were paying ghost workers, but they did not include in the report that they were employing their own people in certain positions, especially in revenue collection and claiming salaries for those workers,” he alleged.
On the revenue collection, Colley said the committee’s report was inconsistent with the facts, “Because revenue collection is not all inclusive in KM. When I heard them saying they have doubled our periodic revenue collection, I laughed and at the same time I felt very sorry for the upcoming mayor because what they are saying is not true,” he argued.
He said between July and September revenue collection falls very low and during the period things became tough at the council. “I will even advise Talib Bensouda to be very careful if not he will not be able to pay salaries.”
Mayor Colley said when he was leaving office the council’s annual revenue collection was D160 million.
On the suspensions of the KMC CEO and the financial director, Colley alleged that the decision was taken out of anger, saying the interim committee wanted to impose certain conditions on them that they refused and that was why the Bakary Jammeh interim council sidelined them.
Colley also denied allegations that KMC was turned to a political bureau and that the place was always made open to everybody, the opposition included.
In conclusion, he urged the mayor-elect to be a good listener and avoid acting on unsubstantiated reports and hearsay.