Nigeria moves to checkmate civil servants against over-bloated budgets
Abuja, September 5, 2018 (AltAfrica)-The Government of Nigeria has expressed concern over unethical vices which have been known to engender over-bloated budgetary allocations for salaries, incomes and wages of civil servants, warning that such practices should stop henceforth.
The government also explained that new civil service culture of efficiency, productivity, incorruptibility and citizenship centred administration must be taken into consideration in determining appropriate levels of manpower.
The Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Winifred Oyo-Ita, represented by the Permanent Secretary (Common Services Office) in the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Ayodele Folayan, stated these in Lafia, Nasarawa State capital, at the opening ceremony of the 2018 workshop on manpower planning and budgeting with the theme: “Institutionalising efficiency in the civil service through manpower planning”.
She also promised to “domesticate enduring ethical values” and address issues including stagnation of promotion and all other factors which often bring about falsification of records by civil servants for them to remain in service.
The programme which was organised by the Public Service Institute of Nigeria and OHCSF for over 300 senior officers of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Government, had Human Resources Managers who are saddled with the responsibility of providing the right personnel for the delivery of institutional mandates as targets.
The Administrator/Chief Executive of PSIN, Dr. Abdul-Ganiyu Obatoyinbo, said the programme was part of the on-going reforms in the OHCSF as contained in 2017-2020 Federal Civil Service Strategy and Implementation Plan.
According to him, the workshop was packaged with all MDAs in mind, to equip participants with the practical knowledge and skills required for implementing an efficient and effective manpower planning and budgeting, capable of ensuring the scalability of the right mix of workforce necessary for the achievement of the goals of the various MDAs.
A statement by the Director of Press and Public Relations in PSIN, Ekaete Umo, quoted the Oyo-Ita as advising participants to initiate the Efficient, Productive, Incorruptible and Citizen-Centred Culture in line with the 2017-2020 strategic plan of the civil service in Nigeria.
The HoS said the workshop was aimed at building capacity and inculcating the right competencies in the real processes of reviewing manpower needs and predicting precise future needs of the right kind, number and skills as new recruits to fill available vacancies.
She said, “The right manning level with appropriate skills set is a much needed pre-requisit to actualize the lofty ideals enshrined in Mr. President’s agenda for the Nigerian civil service as envisaged in the new reform initiative under the Federal Civil Service Strategy and Implementation Plan 2017-2020.
“An overview of the civil service manpower planning has shown recurring trend of inaccurate data base, poor statistics, unrealistic forecasts, extraneous influences, and resultant overstaffing. These vices in turn gets factored into the annual budgets leading to over-bloated budgetary allocations to cater for salaries, incomes and wages and other related fringe benefits of civil servants.
“The new civil service ethos of EPIC must be brought to bear in determining appropriate manning levels and check the occurring unrealistic manpower needs assessment undertaken by MDAs.
“In recent times, the new realities that the civil service has had to grapple with are vacancy constraints that have led to prolonged stagnations of eligible officers due for promotion increasing incidences of falsification of records by officers who want to stay longer than required in the service, checkmating arbitrary deployment of officers without regards to competencies, required skills and enforcement of full compliance with approved structures as well as manning levels.
“Equally evident is the absence of a structured approach to coaching and mentorship that should undergird effective leadership and succession planning in MDAs”.
The HoS promised to address some issues which often bring about falsification of records by civil servants for them to remain in service.
“Bearing in mind the foregoing shortcomings, the need to fine tune efficiency into the human resources planning processes in the civil service has become self-evident. There is also a need to domesticate enduring ethical values and competencies in the true EPIC spirit.
It is in furtherance of these ideals that the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation in collaboration with PSIN has organised this 2018 manpower workshop, as a platform to articulate and proffer better strategies to address manpower resources challenges nationwide”, Oyo-Ita said.