Jonathan swears in HoS, commissioner

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Aug 21st, 2014
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President Goodluck Jonathan swore in yesterday the new Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Mr. Danladi Kefasi, and new commissioner representing Imo and Abia in the Federal Civil Service Commission, Dr. Chima Odunze.

Kefasi, who was the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, replaced Goni Aji, who retired after 35 years in service.

Before the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting began, Jonathan urged the two officers use their wealth of experience to instil discipline in the service and enforce standard practices.

He said: “Incidentally, the two people who took the oaths of office have to do with the management of the civil service of the federation, which is critical. For any government to do well, the civil service should be its centre of activities. For us to succeed as a nation, there must be absolute discipline and orderly conduct in the civil service. That is why your jobs are quite challenging.

“But from your experience, both of you are quite conversant with the operations of the civil service. I believe that you will bring your experience to bear as you manage the civil service.

“People must handle government affairs as government affairs and not personal matters. My observation with people, from the little period that I worked in government, is that there are those who base things on their thinking and not on standard practice. There must be a standard practice.”

He added: “One key thing to reckon with is standard practice rather than doing what they think is right or wrong. The idea is making sure that things are properly done to minimise errors.

“But over the period, people decide to do things in this country with impunity and misconduct. We charge you, as you are coming in, to handle this responsibility and make sure things improve.

“From the reforms by the Olusegun Obasanjo administration till today, we still notice certain aberrations. But we believe that as the new Head of Civil Service of the Federation, you will make sure things are done properly.”

The President stressed that the past four Heads of Service he worked with performed well.

Kefasi warned that any civil servant caught withholding official documents or mails beyond 14 days would be punished.

He addressed reporters at the end of the FEC meeting.

Kefasi said he would ensure discipline and boost productivity in the civil service.

The HoS said he would punish those who perform poorly while those who perform well would be motivated to do more.

His office, he said, would build a new website for the public to lodge their complaints or suggestions direct to his office.

Kefasi said: “Obviously, we have the transformation agenda of the President. So, my vision for the service is to have a compact service that is well managed, well focused, committed, highly skilled and very innovative.

“I intend to set a limit of 14 days maximum. Any mail or document treated outside 14 days, such officers will be appropriately reprimanded. There will be incentives for those who do well and, of course, the stick for those who don’t do well.”

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