PUBLIC SERVICE REFORMS IN NIGERIA


Content

ABSTRACT

The Nigerian government has embarked on several reforms aimed at improving the efficiency, effectiveness and professionalism in the public service. Notwithstanding the said reforms, the Nigerian Public Service still remains inefficient, and bedeviled by myriads of problems which include bureaucracy, bribery and corruption, poor structure and sense of accountability, lackadaisical attitude and reluctance of public servants towards work, the presence of ghost workers and an extremely large workforce, lack of job efficiency, political instability, the race for self aggrandizement, inadequate of control systems and many others are antithetical to the proper functioning of the public service in Nigeria. Despite the existence of legal and regulatory frameworks and mechanisms such as the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the public service rules and other relevant legislations, the Code of Conduct Bureau, the Code of Conduct Tribunal, aimed at regulating the code of conduct for public service, these mechanisms play minimal roles in the effective regulation of the public service and the Nigerian public service of today remains worse than the near-perfect public service handed over to Nigeria by Britain. Hence, there has been from time to time, a constant need for reforms in the Public service in Nigeria. This work examines the functions of public service, the challenges affecting the public service, the various reforms in the public service, the measure of effectiveness of the public service reforms/regulatory frameworks in the public service, and proposes practical solutions to these problems. This work also draws a comparison between the public service in Nigeria with the Public Service in the United Kingdom and the United States of America. This work also recommends the need for public servants to comply with laid down laws, rules and regulations in the public service, proposes effective criminal justice administration in the prosecution of bad public servants who violate public service rules and their accomplices aiding and abetting their unlawful activities, proposes a decentralization of the fight against corruption in the public service, re-orienting public servants on their status as accountable servants for the public, and instilling in public servants a general drive for dedication, integrity, accountability and patriotism in their service delivery.

 


 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

                                                                                                                                    Pages

Title Page                                                                                                                    i

Certifrication                                                                                                               ii

Dedication                                                                                                                  iii

Acknowledgement                                                                                                      iv

Table of Content                                                                                                         v

 

CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION                                                       

1.1       Meaning Of Public Service                                                                             1

1.2       Historical Background Of Public Service In Nigeria                         3

1.3       Features Of Public Service                                                                             5

1.4       Scope Of Public Service                                                                                 6

1.5       Distinction Between The Public Service And The Civil Service                    8

1.6       Functions Of The Nigerian Civil Service                                                        11

1.7       Effectiveness In The Public Service                                                               13

1.8       Meaning Of Effectiveness                                                                              15

1.9       The Concept Of New Public Management                                                     17

 

CHAPTER TWO                                        

2.1       Meaning Of Reform                                                                                       20

2.2       The Necessity For Public Service Reforms In Nigeria                                   20

2.3       Stages Of Public Service Reforms In Nigeria                                                23

2.3.1    Pre-Independence Reforms                                                                            23

2.3.2    Post Independence Reforms                                                                           28

2.3.3    Public Service During The Second Republic                                                  32

2.3.4    Falae Committee 1976) (A.K.A.) Committee On The ReAppraisal Of        33

The Civil Service

2.3.5    Dotun Philips Study Team (1985)                                                                  34

2.3.6    The 1988 Civil Service Reform                                                                      35

2.3.7    Evaluation Of The 1988 Reforms                                                                   36

2.3.8    Allison Ayida Review Panel – 1995                                                               37

2.3.9    Obasanjo Administration Reform                                                                   38

2.3.10  Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar’adua And Goodluck Jonathan                                44

Administrations Public Service Reforms.

 

CHAPTER THREE                        

3.1       Challenges Of The Public Service Reforms In Nigeria                                  47

3.2       Effectiveness Of Reforms In The Public Service In Nigeria                          51

3.3       The Federal Civil Service                                                                                52

3.4       State Civil Service                                                                                          53

3.5       Statutory Corporations Of The Federal And State Governments                  54

3.6       Authorities Or Commissions Established By Government                            56

3.7       Independent National Electoral Commission                                                 58

3.8       The Economic And Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)                           59

3.9       The Armed Forces                                                                                          61

3.10     The Nigeria Police                                                                                           63

3.11     The Judiciary                                                                                                   64

 


 

CHAPTER FOUR

4.1       Legal Reforms In The Public Service                                                             67

 

CHAPTER FIVE: RECOMMENDATION AND CONCLUSION

5.1       Recommendations                                                                                          76       

5.2       Conclusion                                                                                                      78

BIBLIOGRAPHY                                                                                                     80


CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

 

1.1       MEANING OF PUBLIC SERVICE

There are various meanings, definitions and misconceptions surrounding the concept of “Public Service” as proffered by several writers and authors alike. However, in this chapter, the public service will not only be defined from the statutory, constitutional and judicial points of view but also, a distinction will be drawn between the Public Service and Civil Service.

One of the most common misconceptions about the public service is that which automatically tags public servants as civil servants. Another of such misconceptions is evident from the definition preferred by Okoli and Onah[1] who submitted that “the English used the term public service in a broader concept to include the personnel of the central government agencies” and that “in our use of the term “public service”, we exclude the Armed Forces, the quasi-government corporations and statutory Bodies”.

It is humbly submitted that the above definition runs contrary to the provisions of Section 318 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) which defines the public service as “the service of the Federation in any capacity in respect of the Government of the Federation” and includes Servants such as: 

a)      Clerk or other Staff of the National Assembly or of each House of the National Assembly; 

b)      Member of Staff of the Supreme Court, the Court of  Appeal, the Federal High Court, the High Court of  the Federal Capital Territory Abuja, the Sharia Court of Appeal of FCT, the Customary Court of Appeal  of FCT or other courts established for the Federation by this Constitution and by Act of the National  Assembly; 

c)      Member or Staff of any Commission or authority established for the Federation by this Constitution or by an Act of the National Assembly; 

d)     Staff of any area Council; 

e)      Staff of any Statutory Corporation established by a n Act of the National Assembly;  

f)       Staff of any educational institution established or financed principally by the Government of the Federation;

g)      Staff of any company or enterprises in which the Government of the Federation or its agency owns controlling shares or interest; and

h)      Members or officers of the armed forces of the Federation or the Nigeria Police Force or other government security agencies established by law.

 

Other authors have proffered better definitions and broader conceptualization and differences between the concepts of public and civil service. 

With respect to the Public Service, Adamolekun[2] submitted that it “usually indicates a wider scope than the civil service (and)... means the totality of services that are organized under public (i.e. government) authority”. Therefore, it covers ministries, departments and agencies of the central government, its field administration, local government, the military, other security forces and the judiciary. This is a broader conceptualization and it approximates the constitutional definition of the terms and the distinction between them.

 

On his part, Olaopa[3] noted that constitutional provisions did not recognize the term “the Nigerian Public Service”, but rather, its provisions contained the Public Service of the Federation, at the federal and state levels; the public service of the states of the federation including Local Government Council services.

He defined public service of the Federation to include all officials of “government at the federal state and local government levels in the ministries, parastatals, extra- ministerial departments and the paramilitary organizations”.[4]

1.2       HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF PUBLIC SERVICE IN NIGERIA

The history/devolution of public service in Nigeria can be traced to colonialism in Nigeria. The Nigerian public bureaucracy is a product of the British Colonial public service, and the arrangement of ministries, departments and agencies of government derived largely from the British system of administration.[5]

Prior to the British colonialism in Nigeria, different ethnic groups that make up Nigeria today lived in empires and clans. In the North, there existed different empires while in the South there existed different empires, clans and communities. The British colonial power through conquest, forcefully integrated different ethnic communities and kingdoms under the Lagos colony and established direct rule in 1861. Civil Service (public service) was created in 1862f with this specific purpose; the survival of capitalism in colonial Nigeria and the stability of colonial capitalist state structure. As a result, British government established different hierarchical positions of Governors, Chief Magistrate, colonial secretary and senior military officers, office of private secretary to the Governor, Auditor for Public Account, Chief clerk and collector of customs.

According to Oladipo[6] the civil and public services collectively represent the Nigeria public bureaucracies and constitute an indispensable tool of governance from the colonial era as manifested in the discharge of the following functions:

Ø  Formulation of government policies and programmes;

Ø  Planning and implementation of government policies and programmes on social services provision;

Ø  Preparation of annual budgets and development plans;

Ø  Revenue collection such as taxes, fines and duties;

Ø  Making bye-laws, regulations and orders under powers granted by the Parliament and other quasi-judicial functions;

Ø  Keeping government records and properties;

Ø  Information dissemination and public enlightenment

 

These public bureaucracies were established as the essential ingredient, sine-qua-non for the consolidation of pre-colonial state structures in Nigeria which were occupied solely by the British. In 1900, the Niger coast protectorate was merged with the Lagos Colony and became the Southern protectorate. But in the Northern protectorate, the colonial power established the system of indirect rule where the traditional rulers served as the link between the colonial civil service and the people. The 1914 amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates into a single entity called Nigeria helped put in place a centralized public service administration. The real structure of Public service was put in place by Sir Hugh Clifford. He established a central secretariat in Lagos in 1921. In 1939 similar secretariats were established for the three broad groups of provinces administered from Ibadan, Enugu and Kaduna. The 1940’s and 1950 saw the emergence of the Nationalist Nigerian administration and marked the beginning of a truly Nigerian public service. This period also marked the beginning of pressures for reforms in the Nigeria Political and civil service structure.[7]

The British sought to maintain law and order and utilize the public service and its personnel to exploit and expropriate indigenous natural resources[8]. Despite the unparalleled expansion in the Public Service from 1960 till date, the structure has remained essentially the same, which has made it difficult to rise to the dictates of developmental paradigms, notwithstanding various reform attempts by various administrations of government.[9]

 

Upon independence, there were still many British Officials as permanent secretaries and professional heads of departments with a few Nigerians in the service. The Public service was allowed to function in its traditional British form i.e. public servants were employed by the Public Service Commission. At that time, public servants were recruited, appointed, graded, investigated and disciplined by the commission. Ministers could neither appoint nor remove civil servants and could not directly discipline them. However, the minister had the right to decide against the recommendation of the permanent secretary notwithstanding all evidence. Things started to change after the coup that overthrew Gowon in 1975, when thousands of public servants were summarily dismissed without the benefit of defending themselves. Until the 1988 reforms, the civil service in Nigeria was organized strictly according to British traditions. It was apolitical; civil servants were expected to serve every government in a non-partisan way. Recruitment and promotion provided the culture of meritocracy from the public service.[10]

Upon Nigeria’s independence in October 1960, the 1960 constitution provided for a parliamentary government and a substantial measure of self-government for the country’s three regions which where the Eastern, Western and Northern regions.

Since then, various panels have studied and made recommendations for reforming of the Civil Service, including the Morgan Commission of 1963, the Adebo Commission of 1971 and the Udoji Commission of 1972 – 74. A major change occurred with the adoption in 1979 of a constitution modelled on that of the United States. The Dotun Philips Panel of 1985 attempted to reform the Civil Service. The later report of the Ayida Panel made recommendations to reverse some of the past innovations of the Dotun Phillips panel in order to have a more efficient civil service.[11] The Civil Service has been undergoing gradual and systematic reforms and restructuring since May 29, 1999 when the military handed over power to the civilian government of President Olusegun Obasanjo, after decades of military autocracy.

 

 

1.3       FEATURES OF PUBLIC SERVICE

Some of the basic features of Public service institutions include:

  1. State Ownership;
  2. Public Accountability;
  3. State Control;
  4. Autonomy;
  5. Continuity, etc.[12]

 

1.4       SCOPE OF PUBLIC SERVICE

Public services generally fall under four classes namely: the civil service of the federation, the civil service of the state; the public service of the federation and the public service of the state.

The term ‘Public Service’ is used to refer to all the activities concerned with the management of government administration and the study of these activities. Precisely, it deals with all activities that come directly under governmental activities.

For a definition of Public Service to be proper, it must of necessity include the activities and services rendered by the following public institutions: (i) The Federal Civil Service (ii) The State Civil Service (iii) Local Governments (iv) Statutory Corporations of the Federal and State Governments (v) Companies or enterprises with full or majority ownership by either the Federal or State Government (vi) Authorities or Commissions established by the Federal or State Government (vii) Educational institutions established or financed mainly by Federal and or State Governments (viii) The Nigeria Police (ix) The Armed Forces; and (x) The Judiciary.

Constitutionally, the Public Service is the Service of the Federation in any capacity in respect of the Offices of The Clerk or other staff of the National Assembly; members of staff of the Courts of Judicature of the Federation and States, members of staff of any commission or authority established for the Federation or States, staff of any company or enterprise in which the Government or its agencies hold a controlling share or interest; members of the Armed Forces and the Police; staff of a Local Government Council; of a statutory corporation; educational institutions established or principally financed by government.[13]

 

The constitution also ensures the public service is a mandatory institution of the State as it makes it mandatory for the existence of a public service at both the Federal and State levels of government in Nigeria.[14]

 

Simply put, public officers are Persons who render public services and or serve in an institution or establishment wherein they receive regular wages/salaries from government i.e. persons employed and paid by government in its institution or establishment subject to the provisions of the Fifth Schedule to the constitution which defines public officers as persons holding any of the offices specified in Part II of the Schedule.

 

Chairmen and members of adhoc commission, tribunals; committees are excluded from the list of public officers in Part II of the Fifth Schedule to the constitution. However, it extends beyond the definitions of Part IV, Sections 318 (1), as it also includes elective as well as appointed offices i.e. The President, Vice-President, Governors and their Deputies, Minister and Commissioners; members and staff of the Legislative Houses, Chairman, Directors of all Corporations and Companies in which the State has controlling shares or interest.

 

In a bid to distinguish between the public service and the Civil Service, the Nigerian constitution defines civil service of the federation thus:

 

“Service of the federation in a civil capacity as staff of the office of the President, the Vice-President, a Ministry or department of the Government of the Federation assigned with the responsibility for any business of the Government of the Federation.”[15]

 

 

From a judicial stand point, the Court of Appeal, Ilorin Division in the case of OLORUNTOBA – OJU V. LAWAL & 3ORS,[16] defined public service of the federation as follows:

“By virtue of S.277(1) of the 1979 constitution (now Section S. 318(1)[17] of the 1999 constitution) public service of the federation means service of the federation in any capacity in respect of the government of the federation and it includes service as: Clerk or other staff of the National Assembly or of each House of the National Assembly; Member of staff of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal, the Federal High court, the High court of the Federal Capital Territory or other courts established for the federation by the Constitution and by the National Assembly; Member or staff of any commission or authority established for the federation by the Constitution or any Act of the National Assembly; Staff of any statutory corporation established by an Act of the National Assembly; Staff of any educational institution established or financed principally by the Government of the federation; Staff of any company or enterprise in which the Government of the federation or it’s agency owns controlling shares or interest; Members or officers of the armed forces of the federation or the Nigeria Police Force;”

The Court of Appeal in OLORUNTOBA – OJU V. LAWAL & 3ORS (supra) further stated as follows:“to hold that since the definition of the public service includes the “civil service” therefore a public servant or officer is a civil servant and therefore subject to the civil rules, will definitely be an over simplification apart from being very wrong because for example a member or officers of the armed forces of the federation or of Nigeria police force is a public servant but definitely not a civil servant and therefore not bound by the civil service Rules. The same thing applies to judicial officers including the learned trial judge who is not subject to the discipline of the civil service commission which would have been the case if the civil service rules were to be applicable to his office or employment.

 

1.5       DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE PUBLIC SERVICE AND THE CIVIL SERVICE

The term public service is broader and more inclusive than the civil service. The Public service in addition to the Civil Service encompasses the Armed Forces, the Judiciary, the Police, Government Institutions, Parastatals; Government owned Companies and Statutory Agencies.[18] However, some legal writers and authors have wrongly distinguished between these two concepts. A questionable example is the distinction referring to civil servants as those public servants who are direct employees of the federal and state governments, other than the police, the armed forces personnel, the judiciary personnel and teachers. Its usage excludes also employees of statutory corporation and boards.[19]

It is humbly submitted that the 1999 constitution of Nigeria never excluded employees of statutory corporations and boards as public servants.[20]However, the 1999 Constitution increased the scope of the Public Service by including Staff of any area council as public servants. Public service of the State means the service of the sate in any capacity in respect of the government of the state and includes service as: Clerk or other staff of the House of Assembly; Member or staff of  the High Court, the Sharia court of Appeal, customary Court of Appeal or other court established for a state by the constitution or by a law of a House of Assembly; Member or staff of any commission or authority established for the state by the Constitution or any law of a House of Assembly; Staff of any local Government council; Staff of any statutory corporation established by a law of a House of Assembly; Staff of any educational institution established or financed principally by the Government of the state; and Staff of any company or enterprise in which the Government of a state or its agency holds controlling shares or interest. Meanwhile, by the same Section 318 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended),[21] civil service of the federation means service of the federation in a civil capacity as staff of the office of the President, the Vice President, a Ministry or department of the Government of the federation assigned with the responsibility of any business of the Government of the federation, while civil service of a state means service of the Government of a state in civil capacity staff of the office of the Governor, or a ministry or department of Government of the state assigned with the responsibility of any business of the Government of the state.

According to Adebayo[22] the civil service consists of all servants of the state, other than those holding political appointments, who are employed in a civil capacity and whose remuneration is paid out of money voted by the legislature. Also, civil service usually refers to the functionaries of state who are appointed to their government posts through a non-elective process[23]. These functionaries work in the main government Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Departments. The Extra-Ministerial Organizations are headed by Chairmen and not Ministers.

Civil service refers to government ministries and departments that are charged with the responsibilities of implementing policies[24]. They are those in the service of federal, state and local government services primarily responsible for policy implementation and making inputs available for policy formulation. Chapter 3, Section 2 of the Civil Service Handbook[25] makes the definition of civil service clear[26]. It defines the civil service as follows:

 “The civil service is a body or organ which enjoys continuity of existence. Its members unlike members of the National Assembly are not limited to a short term office at the end of which they may not be returned to office ….. When a civil servant relinquishes his office for whatever reason, his place is taken by another person who similarly enjoys security of employment”.

According to the Nigerian Constitution[27], civil service of the federation means service of the federation in a civil capacity as staff of the office of the president, the vice president, a ministry or department of the Government of the federation assigned with the responsibility of any business of the Government of the federation. The civil service is a term used to cover civil servants who are direct employees of the federal and state governments, other than the police, the armed forces personnel, the judicial personnel and the teachers. Its usage excludes also employees of statutory corporations and boards.[28]Adamolekum[29] sees the civil service as "the body of permanent officials appointed to assist the political executive in formulating and implementing governmental policies". The Nigerian Civil Service consists of employees in Nigerian government agencies other than the military. Most employees are career civil servants in the Nigerian ministries, progressing based on qualifications and seniority. The Public Service includes not only those who work in the regular government ministries and departments but also statutory corporations, boards and the armed forces. Hence, Adamolekun[30] defines it as the totality of services that are organized under government authority. It can therefore be said that civil service is narrower in scope and excludes some government employees who are public servants.[31]

 

1.6       FUNCTIONS OF THE NIGERIAN CIVIL SERVICE

According to Ezeani[32] five functions of the Nigerian Civil Service are clear cut and they are:

(1) Policy implementation

(2) Provision of inputs for policy formulation

(3) Investigative and regulatory functions

(4) Ensuring continuity of public administration

(5) Informative function

 

(1) Policy Implementation

The major function of any civil service including that of Nigeria is to implement the policies of any government in power, whether military or civilian. Irrespective of their political leanings, civil servants are expected to serve the government of the day. The success of any government in power is a function of the expertise, skills and knowledge of the civil servants.. Ezeani reinforces this when he notes that the function of the civil service is to close the gap between the expression of government’s intention as represented by their vision, national plans or agenda and their actual accomplishment.[33]

.

(2) Provision of Inputs for Policy Formulation

Nigerian civil servants provide inputs for decision making by the political class. Through memoranda to their ministers and permanent secretaries, they provide information, data and informed opinions to the political class. The preparation of the nation’s plans which could be called many names such as Vision 2020, Agenda (7-point Agenda), National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategies (NEEDS) have had lots of inputs from civil servants and government consultants.

 

(3) Investigative and Regulatory Roles

With respect to the investigative and regulatory function of the Nigerian civil service, there are many organs of government that are responsible for investigating unacceptable behaviour and also for suggesting appropriate regulations to government.[34] Such organs are: the National Drug Law and Enforcement Agency, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Internal Revenue Board, and Independent Corrupt Practices and Miscellaneous Offences Commission.

 

(4) Continuity of Public Administration. It is generally recognized that the civil service never dies. It is a continuous organ irrespective of changes in government. Civil servants may retire or disengage their services, but there are others who have been groomed to take over from them. The civil service is a store of knowledge of past government decisions and procedures.[35] They therefore play an educative role by assisting the political class to realize their roles in governance.

 

(5) Information Dissemination

This function is very close to the continuity function. The difference is that the focus here is on the gathering of data and information which provide a databank for nationals and non-nationals. The civil service, through the Ministry of Information, is responsible for informing the public about the decisions of government as well as its achievements, activities and major events.

 

1.7       EFFECTIVENESS IN THE PUBLIC SERVICE

Nigeria seems to be a political circus of some sort where a few individuals are empowered above public institutions and issues of public office accountability and trust are treated with kid gloves in the face of tribalism and oppression of the majority by a few persons.

Hence a presidential aspirant in USA, Donald Trump remarked that Nigeria should be colonized by the USA thus:

“Their (Nigerians) governments are so corrupt, they rob the people blind and bring it all here to spend. And their people run away and come down here and take our jobs.  We can’t have that! If I become president, we’ll send them all home. We’ll build a wall at the Atlantic Shore. Then maybe we’ll re-colonise them because obviously they did not learn a damn thing from the British!”[36]

Since the creation of Nigeria, no administration seems to have shown more sincerity in its fight for public service effectiveness and against public service misconduct and corruption other than the current administration of President Buhari.


However, over centralization of the current reforms in the federal government, the limitation of the fight against corruption to the federal tier of government and political opponents at the expense of the National economy is a major criticism of the president Buhari led administration.

In Nigeria, there's a general outcry that nothing works. Corruption, embezzlement, misappropriation of funds and so on characterize all facets of the public sector in Nigeria, from the power sector to the education sector to the health sector to the agricultural sector to the security/defence sector and so on.


The Reforms in the public sector are largely ineffective as the common man is being impoverished day by day and the rate of inflation continues to rise.

Effective and efficient service delivery resulting in maximum satisfaction on the part of those being served by public servants, are the hallmark of public service.

A topical issue of discourse has been whether or not public services or output are measureable. Proponents in support of the immeasurability of public services or output hinge their arguments on the notion that since public (sector) administration embarks on provision of social services  for instance, law and order, security, flood protection, foreign policy, currency and coinage, naturalization and citizenship etc, its output/activities are unquantifiable.[37]

According to Ekong[38] “since bureaucracies intrinsically lack objective criteria for measuring efficiency or a feedback mechanism in the sense of immediate profit or loss from daily operations, they tend to become rigid and to cling to their ineffectiveness until there is a crisis”.

However, proponents of the school of thought in support of the measurability of public service effectiveness have argued that same can be measured using administrative/management, policy and service criteria.[39]

 

1.8       MEANING OF EFFECTIVENESS

As succinctly put by Ekong, effectiveness is “the extent to which an organization realizes its goals or objectives”.[40] By this definition, effectiveness relates directly to organizational goals objectives or ends.

A further drive towards understanding the concept of effectiveness would require understanding the goals/objectives of public organizations which are diverse.

Effectiveness of public service can be measured or determined largely by the extent to which it satisfies the yearnings, aspirations of the society it exists and functions in and for public services to pass the mark of effectiveness, its values must approximate societal values and must be pursued as such. The regular review of the goals of public institutions is essential to justify their continued existence and relevance.

Every reform initiative should be aimed at improving managerial capacity as well as institutional development geared towards achieving administrative effectiveness and ultimately, national development.

According to Soyode[41] effectiveness means “... the capacity to provide or accomplish the correct end ... emphasizes the efforts to secure the relevant outcome.” To him, effectiveness must translate and correspond to felt needs of the recipients of public service.

Heinrich[42] likened administrative effectiveness to performance management which translates to “working to infuse quality management principles and moving toward a focus on results or value for money...”

While to Tampieri[43] “effectiveness refers to the extent to which the objectives have been achieved and the relationship between the intended and actual effect of outputs in objectives achievement”. His views and those of Ekong are similar from the point of goals/objectives attainment of public service. The central issue here is on how administrative process contributes to organizational goals and objectives. It must be noted that with reference to public organizations in Nigeria, the focus ought to be on the “true public” and their interests taken care of through qualitative service delivery.[44]

Quality, cost and service delivery should be part of the irreducible criteria underlining administrative effectiveness. A major challenge, however, is the ability or mechanism of the public sector to know if qualitative services are provided, the impact of public policy on citizens, and if results or outputs translate to real value for expenditure/costs.

Though Public Service effectiveness found expression under former President Jonathan’s transformation agenda through Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and has also found expression in the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, neither of these  administrations seem to be in sync with the realities and feelings of Nigerians as regards public service effectiveness.

International correspondent Christiane Amanpour of the Cable Network News (CNN), during an interview with Former president Jonathan weighed the claims of Former president Jonathan on the alleged drastic improvement in power generation and distribution in Nigeria with the views and opinions of Nigerians who claimed that the power supply in the country had deteriorated drastically.[45]

Also, president Buhari has been accused of not carrying Nigerians along in the goings-on in the polity and public service administration as he is fond of speaking to Nigerians mainly when he is in foreign lands.

The social media has come to identify itself as a veritable tool in measuring the feelings and yearnings of Nigerians as regards public service effectiveness, but this mechanism is not without its own limitations.[46]

According to Obia,[47] the performance system initiative is premised on three basic principles namely: “what gets measured gets done; if you cannot measure success, you cannot reward it; if you cannot measure failure, you cannot correct it”.

 

1.9       THE CONCEPT OF NEW PUBLIC MANAGEMENT

The concept of New Public Management is a reform initiative that was born out of the inefficiency of the public service and the growing need of Nigerians for effectiveness in public service delivery.

According to Rhodes[48] the new public management has its focus on management, not policy, and on performance appraisal and efficiency; the disaggregation of Public bureaucracies into agencies which deal with each other on a user-pay basis, the use of quasi-markets and contracting out to foster competition; cost-cutting, and a style of management which emphasizes, amongst other things, output targets, limited-term contracts, monetary incentives and freedom to manage.

The underlying principles of New Public Management (NPM) include: management orientation, efficiency and performance enhancing measures based on objective and timely appraisal, leaner public bureaucracies assuming the form of agencies that are driven by market principles such as contracting out (out-sourcing), competition, cost-reduction measures, setting benchmarks and targets, short-term contracts, financial inducement and guaranteeing wider latitudes of discretion for Managers.

According to Obi and Nwanegbo,[49] New Public Management is a label used to describe a management culture that emphasizes the centrality of the citizen or customers, as well as accountability for result. It captures most of the structural, organization and management changes taking place in the public services of most developing countries and a bundle of management.

Nigeria indeed needs a reform initiative such as NPM which will to a very large extent, enthrone Public accountability and provide remedy whenever corruption rears its ugly head in the Nigerian public affairs. This is because Nigeria’s quality of public service delivery is currently below average and bedeviled by corruption.

As posited by Hood[50], the principles of the New Public Management policy framework are:

  1. That direct public sector costs should be cut and labour discipline raised so as to improve resource use;
  2. That private-sector-style management practices should be applied to increase flexibility in decision-making.
  3. That competition in the public sector (through term contracts and tendering) should be increased, as rivalry is the key to lower costs and better standards;
  4. That the public sector should be disaggregated and decentralized to make units more manageable and to increase competition among them;
  5. That controls should be shifted from inputs to outputs, to stress results rather than procedure;
  6. That explicit standards and performance measures should be established, because accountability requires clearly stated aims and efficiency required attention to goals; and
  7. That managers should be given powers to conduct hands-on professional management because, accountability requires clear assignment of responsibility, not diffusion of power.

It is humbly submitted that some of these principles have been and are still being applied in Nigeria. President Buhari upon assumption of office as president stated that he would be paid 50% of the salary paid to his predecessor, Goodluck Jonathan. [51] This approach of the president towards governance is still being applauded by Nigerians and some other public servants e.g. vice president Osinbajo has followed the same exemplary path.[52] The president has also embarked on an agenda to cut unnecessary expenses in public service administration and instill discipline in the public service. The president recently directed that audit queries must be answered with twenty four hours of their issue[53] following his displeasure on hearing that audit queries remained unanswered for long periods, sometimes running into years, under previous administrations.

Some of these doctrines were clearly experimented in the Civil/Public Service reform reports of Udoji (1974), Onosode (1982) and to a greater extent motivated the Obasanjo Service Delivery Initiative.[54]

 

 



[1] Okoli, F.C. and Onah, F.O. (2002) Public Administration in Nigeria: Nature, Principles and Application.  Enugu:  John Jacob’s Classic Publishers Ltd. See page 76

[2] Adamolekun, L. (2002) “Governance Context and Reorientation of Government,” in Adamolekun L. (ed) Public Administration in Africa: Main Issues and Selected Country Studies. Ibadan: Spectrum Books Limited. 3-16; Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse

Public Policy and Administration Research  ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)  Vol.3, No.7, 2013 53, http://eprints.covenantuniversity.edu.ng/3763/1/Ibietan,IISTE2.pdf

[3] Olaopa, T., Theory and Practice of Public Administration and Civil Service Reforms in Nigeria. (2008) Ibadan: Spectrum Books Limited. Pages 35-42

[4] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse

Public Policy and Administration Research  ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)  Vol.3, No.7, 2013 53, http://eprints.covenantuniversity.edu.ng/3763/1/Ibietan,IISTE2.pdf at page 4.

[5] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse

Public Policy and Administration Research  ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)  Vol.3, No.7, 2013 53, http://eprints.covenantuniversity.edu.ng/3763/1/Ibietan,IISTE2.pdf at page 56

[6] Oladipo, J.A. (2007) Reforming the Civil Service, in Saliu, H; Amali, E; Olawepo, R. (eds) Nigeria’s Reform Programme: Issues and Challenges. Ibadan: Vantage Publishers Ltd. at page 363

[7] Ogunretifa B., federal Civil Service reforming Nigeria: the case of democratic centralism, online at http://www.academic.edu/2006090/Federal civil service reforms the case for democratic centralism, accessed 14 March, 2015.

[8] Rosemary O. A., Joseph C. O. & Emma E. O. Chukwuemeka, “Civil Service Reforms in Nigeria: The Journey so far in service delivery”, American Journal of social and management science pg. 17, 2012; where it was stated that, the public service “was basically structured in such a manner that enabled colonial masters to successfully extract the much coveted financial and material resources needed by their controlling metropolitan powers.”

[9] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse

Public Policy and Administration Research  ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)  Vol.3, No.7, 2013 53, http://eprints.covenantuniversity.edu.ng/3763/1/Ibietan,IISTE2.pdf at page 56

[10]. Fagbemi A. O Dr. (Mrs), Introduction to public service online at http:www.nou.edu.ng/NOUN-OCL/pdf accessed on 17th March 2015.

[11] Office of the Head of Service of the Federation (2009).Restructuring of the Head of civil of the federation. www.hosf.gov.ng/node/354.

[12]www.preservearticles.com/2011092714115/what-are-the -five-basic-characteristics-of-public-sector-enterprises.html

[13] See the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended)

[14] By virtue of Chapter VI of the 1999 Constitution under the title: the Executive, Part I (D) and Part (C)

[15] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse

Public Policy and Administration Research  ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)  Vol.3, No.7, 2013 53, http://eprints.covenantuniversity.edu.ng/3763/1/Ibietan,IISTE2.pdf

[16] NWLF (2003)17 – NWLF (Pt. 848) 67.

[17]  S. 318 (Interpretation section of the 1999 constitutions as amended.

[18] Oluyede P. A., Nigeria Administrative Law, University Press Plc Ibadan (2007 Reprinted.)

[19] See the opinion of Nwosu (1977) in Obi, E.A. The Origin and Evolution of the Nigerian Public Service, in Obi, E.A. and Dalhatu, M.Y. (eds) Current Practices and Problems of Nigerian Public Administration. (2007) Onitsha: Bookpoint Educational Ltd at page 14.

[20] Adamolekun, L. (2002) “ Governance Context and Reorientation of Government,”  in Adamolekun L. (ed) Public Administration in Africa: Main Issues and Selected Country Studies. Ibadan: Sepctrum Books Limited. 3-16.

 

[21] Section 318 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended),

[22] Adebayo A. Principle and practice of public Administration in Nigeria (Revised ed). (1986).  Ibadan : spectrum Books Ltd

[23] Ayeni, V.A. (1987).’’The civil servant and the policy process’’ in O.A; Olusola O. and Ayeni, V (eds).The impact of military on rule, London: The Macmillan Press Ltd.87

[24] Okereke, O.O. The Nigerian civil service after the structural adjustment programme: some critical reminiscences. Nigerian Journal of Politics and Administration (2003).  Vol . No.3.

[25] Chapter 3, Section 2 of the Civil Service Handbook

[26] Federal Republic of Nigeria (1997).Civil service handbook. Lagos. Federal Government Printer.

[27] S. 318 CFRN 1999 (as amended)

[28] Nwosu, H. N (1977) Political Authority and the Nigerian Civil Service Enugu: Fourth Dimension Publishers

[29] Ademolekun, L. (1983). Public Administration: A Nigerian and comparative perspective. London: Longman

[30] supra

[31] Obikeze, S.O. and Obi, E. A. (2004): Public Administration in Nigeria: A Development approach. Onitsha Book Point Ltd.

[32] Ezeani, E.O. (2006). Fundamentals of Public Administration. Enugu. Saap Press Limited.

[33] supra

[34] Supra

[35] Supra

[36] Olatunji Dare, Donald Trump’s delusional world, http://thenationonlineng.net/donald-trumps-delusional-world/ January 26, 2016

 

[37] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse, Public Policy and Administration Research www.iiste.org, ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)

Vol.3, No.7, 2013

[38] Ekong, E.E. Efficiency or Effectiveness: The Dilemma of Emphasis in the Public Service Of the Developing Economies, (1980) at p 19. in Balogun, M.J. (ed) Managerial Efficiency

[39] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse, Public Policy and Administration Research www.iiste.org, ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)

Vol.3, No.7, 2013

 

[40] Ekong, E.E. Efficiency or Effectiveness: The Dilemma of Emphasis in the Public Service Of the Developing Economies, (1980) at p 20. in Balogun, M.J. (ed) Managerial Efficiency

[41] Soyode, A., Measures of Efficiency in Public Enterprises: Some General Theoretic Issues, (1980) in Balogun, M.J. (ed) Managerial Efficiency in the Public Sector. Ile-IfeUNIFE Press Ltd.30 – 44

[42] Heinrich, C.J. Measuring Public Sector Performance and Effectiveness, in Peters B.G. and Pierre, J. (eds) The Handbook of Public Administration. (2007) London: SAGE Publications Limited. 24 – 35

[43] Tampieri, L. Performance Evaluation Indexes in Public Administration: Some Issues of their Actual Usefulness. (2005) Uprava, letnikIII,59 – 80. Retrieved On the 29thApril 2013, www.fu.univ.lj.si/uprava/clanki/letnik III, Stevilka 2, 2005/III STEV 2 december 2005.

[44] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse, Public Policy and Administration Research www.iiste.org, ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)

Vol.3, No.7, 2013

[45] Ogala Emmanuel, Nigerians reject Jonathan’s electricity claim in CNN Superbowl follow-up February 5, 2013 

http://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/118784-nigerians-reject-jonathans-electricity-claim-in-cnn-superbowl-follow-up.html

[46] There is a challenge in the regulation of the social media and the identities of persons who post comments or observations on social media are not easily verified. Hence the recent attempt by the Nigerian government in passing into law the social media bill.

[47] Obia, V. President Jonathan’s Performance Evaluation Initiative. (2012) ThisDay Newspaper(Lagos) 91

[48] Ezeani, E.O. Fundamentals of PublicAdministration (2006) . Enugu: Zik-Chuks Publishers.

[49] Obi, E.A. and Nwanegbo, C.J. Development Administration: Theory and Applications (2006) Onitsha: Bookpoint Ltd.

 

[50] Obi, E.A. and Nwanegbo, C.J. Development Administration: Theory and Applications. (2006) Onitsha: Bookpoint Ltd.

[51] http://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/top-news/186465-breaking-buhari-osinbajo-take-50-pay-cut.html

The president’s decision to take a pay cut was conveyed to the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation on Thursday by the Permanent Secretary of the State House, Nebolisa Emodi.

“I write to forward the completed IPPIS registration form of Mr. President and to draw your kind attention to Mr. President’s directive that only 50% of his salary be paid to him,” the permanent secretary, Mr. Emodi, was quoted as saying in the letter with reference number PRES/81/SGF/17.

[52] supra

[53] http://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/headlines/187670-audit-queries-must-be-answered-in-24-hours-buhari-tells-public-officials.htmlAudit queries must be answered in 24 hours, Buhari tells public officials. The Senior Special Assistant to the President (Media and Publicity), Garba Shehu, confirmed the directives, adding that President Buhari was irrevocably committed to tackling administrative and bureaucratic corruption head-on.

“The era of impunity is gone. The President is taking the war on corruption to the civil service. He is not happy that standard operating procedures and financial regulations are no longer being observed as they should.

“President Buhari will ensure that public officials and civil servants in the service of the Federal Government pay a heavy price from now on for violating financial regulations  or disregarding audit queries,” Mr. Garba said.

[54] Jide Ibietan,  New Public Management and Public Service Effectiveness in Nigeria: A Pragmatic Discourse, Public Policy and Administration Research www.iiste.org, ISSN 2224-5731(Paper) ISSN 2225-0972(Online)

Vol.3, No.7, 2013

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