President Muhammadu Buhari has promised to increase the salaries of civil servants, and a committee has been set up to provide the impetus for the upward review of the salaries. The president recently increased the duty tour allowance of all civil servants as a starting point.
Buhari who was represented by the FCT minister, Bello Muhammad made this known while delivering his address at the Nigeria Civil Service Day Celebration held at the Banquet Hall, State House in Abuja, said his administration is working towards improving the value proposition of the civil service.
The president said he was informed that Nigeria has consistently celebrated the Civil Service Day since 1999 when the African Ministers responsible for Public Service agreed, at their 1994 meeting in Tangiers, Morocco that a day be set aside to celebrate the achievements of the Service.
He said that the Nigeria Civil Service Day was also designed to re-invigorate the Public Service to work towards enhancing productivity and appreciate the hard work and commitment of workers in government service.
Buhari said that the noble decision, taken under the aegis of the African Union, is worthy of sustaining, because it will remain a constant reminder of the need for an annual collective self-evaluation of how the civil service is ensuring a seamless operation of the government machinery.
“I have had a rare privilege of working with the Nigerian Civil Service, at the closest and innermost quarters for the large part of my sojourn in Public Service and had witnessed a formidable and strong public service, which we began to see gradually, loose its relevance in the country.
“Accordingly, I have set up the Presidential Committee on Salaries to harmonize salaries service-wide. It is my hope that the outcome of the Committee’s work will provide the impetus for an upward review of the salaries of deserving civil servants, having recently increased the Duty Tour Allowance of all Civil Servants as a starting point.
“As this process is still going on, want to encourage you to be patient with us as you continue to give your best services to enable us to sustain the good working relationship between the political office holders and the Civil Servants. With sustained understanding and cooperation, we will together contribute our quota to the development of our country, and our efforts will not be in vain.
“In alignment with one of the objectives of the Civil Service Day, we shall be honouring some deserving and hardworking officers who, in their spheres of activities, have demonstrated high-level commitment and dedication to duty.
“This is in continuation of the recognition and awards given to most deserving officers in the various Ministries, Extra-Ministerial Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) of Government last week. This is to appreciate the contributions of the Civil Service to national development and challenge you to do more,” he said.
Head Of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, while delivering her welcome address, acknowledged and appreciated the World Bank, the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM), and the Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG) for their support.
“I am confident that, the new PMS when institutionalized, will serve as a vehicle for the actualization of national goals as well as build competencies and capabilities of public servants through the identification and enhancement of knowledge and skill gaps.
“It is also hoped that the new system will inculcate a performance-based culture that promotes the recognition and reward of high performance within the Federal Public Service; and ensures effective measurement and outcomes of performance at all levels.
“Notwithstanding these modest achievements, for the sustainability of this new System, stakeholder ownership is sacrosanct. The Office is also conscious of other concerns particularly the resistance to change and extreme apathy toward the implementation of PMS.
“For this reason and in conformity with the change mantra of the administration, a Culture Change Video which was developed in collaboration with one of our partners- Africa Initiative for Governance will also be launched today by Mr. President,” she said.