Senate Moves To Stop Political Appointees From Heading Govt Parastatals

Senator Bukola Saraki
Senate President, Bukola Saraki

CONCERNED by the arrangement of legislators by the Federal Government to head agencies and parastatals, ahead of career civil servants, the Senate is presently taking a shot at a bill to end the practice.

As per the Senate, it is an injury for government workers not to be given the chance to head associations they toiled for quite a long time to construct.

The Bill, titled Public Service Efficiency Bill, is intended to permit government employees head government offices and parastatals.

Talking with writers yesterday in Abuja, Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Aliyu Abdullahi, noticed that conveying individuals from outside to head government organizations and parastatals had accomplished more damage than great to the framework.

Abdullahi, who noticed that the Bill would be introduced for first perusing in June, said a portion of the deputies had little information of the workings of associations they headed, adding this regularly prompted against individuals arrangements, decreased efficiency and different issues.

“I have a Bill I am working on. I am trying to bring my experience of how little things have brought the public service to what it is now,” he said.

On the goal of the proposed charge, Senator Abdullahi stated: “First, it is to improve the efficiency of the public service in terms of delivery of service through government programmes and initiatives. It is well known that the public service represents the institutional memory.

“Many governments that have come and gone are frustrated with what is happening in the service. Various efforts have been underway to reform the service, but some of these efforts, if you look at them clearly, are not backed by concrete legislation.

“What I intend to do is that,having come from the service myself, and I have had very painful experiences, I have seen areas where frustration has set in among civil servants, leading to low morale and poor delivery of service.

“The essence of this bill, actually, is to look at some of these key areas like the relationship between the permanent secretary and the account officer with the minister as the political head. At the same time, particularly when you look at the core technical departments with heavy technical input, what is the relationship between the permanent secretary and the line directors?

“All these are grey areas that have been overlooked. From my experience, I have realised that until we do something about it, the service may not be able to continuously deliver on government programmes and initiatives as expected. “There is also the issue of where you are given a clear mandate, but the authority lies somewhere else. You are not even having the sufficient authority to carry out your duty. This bill seeks to find solution to some of these areas.

“There is also the issue between the ministries and their parastatals and agencies. The essence of extra-ministerial agencies and parastatals is to enhance performance but what we see today is that they are constrained by the nature of service, where those in the main ministry tend to over centralise certain decisions. In the end, services are delayed unnecessarily.”



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