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OPINION

President Buhari’s Re-election And Civil Service Reforms

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Continuity is a legitimate process to stability in governance. Economic and infrastructure policies heralded by the incumbent administration therefore will not be truncated. Ironically, some critics are of the opinion that this administration did not do well to deserve a second term in office, but defeating its main opponent clearly undermined the clamor of a section of Nigerians with diverse political and economic interests who long for a new government.

The stiff opposition to unseat the present government was indeed a wakeup call to improve performance in all sectors of governance, especially a focus on the less privileged in society, that constitute the bulk of the majority in terms of numbers. Women and youth empowerment took center stage towards the end of the first four years of this administration too. This made some Nigerians, especially opposition critics, insinuate that funds released to market women and youths for trading activities and skills acquisition was to induce votes from the electorates.

But this administration is confident about delivering on core mandate of road infrastructure, workable rail system, boosting power generation, transmission and distribution of electricity, systemised rice and general crop production in the agricultural sector, revamping the health sector and ensuring regular supply of water to rural and urban centers.

These are all deliverables that require seeing through better end results, so it’s only applicable that the present administration had a chance to be back in power through the people’s votes towards sustainable growth and development in all sectors of our national life.

Having said that, it’s also about the first time the country’s public service reforms has had a comprehensive structure with eight strategy areas of prioritisation that simply addresses the lethargy of the old order in the civil service, to pave the way for growth driven civil service with optimal performance.

The President had given node to structural reforms in the public service with a terminal period of 2020, beginning from 2017, revelations emerged that the handlers of the reforms may not be given an extension, and therefore the performance contract to deliver on the core modules by the Office of the Head of the Civil Service is an onerous task.

From records available to the public, so much work and commitment to beat the deadline has been made by sub-committees of the project including federal permanent secretaries who are by ranking, permanent members of sensitive committees trusted with the responsibility to ensure delivery.

Presidential directives to newly sworn in federal permanent secretaries by president Buhari recently asking them to be more committed than ever before to strengthen the new order to build and restructure the fundamentals of good governance, a product of efficient, productive, incorruptible and citizen-centered world class civil service was a direct testimony to the successes recorded in the ongoing civil service reforms.

At the wake of 2019, the federal civil service outlined and made public domain the performance index of federal government efforts within the last three years to restore values and enhance a more productive and growth driven civil service addressing deliberate plans to enthrone good governance and create jobs through its reform agenda.

Over the years, the country has remained less productive, with high level consumption indices found within working ages 25-65, people around this age bracket today are redundant with no jobs, though a creation of successive misrule but also a weak society that rely on government to create intervention schemes for sustained earnings.

Statistics available to the public shows clearly that less that five per cent of college and university graduates get employed yearly while the rest roam the streets for a reasonable number of years in search of jobs that are not available. Some take to all forms of criminality to satisfy intending ego.

Citizens have long waited on government to roll out programmes that have direct bearing on the people to get involved in private enterprises, developing business concepts in agriculture, marine, oil and gas, road sector development, health, education, water, power, solid minerals and social investments.

Apparently, these initiatives have been reasonably considered by the present administration, which explains why the head of service commenced a training programme for civil servants that were set to be disengaged from service at the end of 2018, creating a future and hope for them and their families.

A society with low production capacity and absence of effective measures for increase in output is likely to experience increase in poverty without option. And that is the scenario in Nigeria presently, the economic indicators are not strong due largely to redundancy that has culminated into poor living condition, which of course will have negative impact on the political and economic sphere of the nation.

In the end, the present administration through its public service reforms has demonstrated the willingness and preparedness to tackle headlong issues of effective participation in governing process by the private sector as contained in one of its core modules in the ongoing reforms.

Joel, wrote in from Abuja





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