ABU Journal, Department Of Public Administration
Volume No: 2|
REPOSITIONING THE NIGERIAN CIVIL SERVICE FOR THE 21ST CENTURY DEVELOPMENT CHALLENGES
DR. LINUS UGWU ODO
DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION ,IBB UNIVERSITY, LAPAI,&NBSP;NIGER STATE
At independence in 1960, the Civil Service of our dream was one whose vision of service was efficiency driven, result-oriented, and citizen focused in task execution This was informed by the realization that the Nigerian state requires a virile civil service as an indispensable national institution for accomplishing the strategic national objective of economic growth and development, poverty reduction, sustainable democracy and good governance. The paper is an appraisal of the value, nature and performance of the civil service in post-independence Nigeria within the context of the dream of Nigerians at independence. The paper noted the regrettable weakened capacity of the civil service to respond to development challenges and improve the quality of life of citizens; and recommended its repositioning as part of the measures of modernizing government machinery to achieve higher levels of efficiency and effectiveness in the drive towards sustainable economic growth and development in the 21st century Nigeria.
Today’s Nigerian civil service must be in line with the current realities of the country and the urgent task to carry out far-reaching reforms for the benefits of the citizenry. As Yayale Ahmed, former Secretary to the Federal Government once charged civil servants:
The days of civil service where you kill yourself on too much procedure is over. We will follow due process in doing our work but you have to bear in mind that target is of the essence. Some of you hide under procedure and leave your work to drag or undone while the nation is suffering. You need to change your ways of working to fast-track policy implementation (Ahmed, 2006).