The Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, CFR, has reiterated that her Office will continue to do its best in ensuring that the welfare of workers is given the desired attention.
Dr. Yemi-Esan, CFR, stated this at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Separate and Joint Meetings of the National Public Service Negotiating Councils on Wednesday, March 29, 2023 at Goshen Event Centre, Auta Balefi, Nasarawa State.
Highlighting the theme of the event, "Fostering Partnership between Government and Trade Unions for Effective Governance," the Head of Service of the Federation emphasized the need to work in synergy, leading to a harmonious relationship between the Labour Unions and Government, as a pre-requisite to industrial peace in a work environment, stressing that this will promote efficiency and effectiveness in the delivery of services.
She added that consistent interaction between both parties will promote and maintain cordial relationship between employer and employees in the Public Service, as well as further enhance sustained industrial peace and harmony in the workplace.
Dr Yemi-Esan, CFR, who was represented by the Chairman of the Councils and Permanent Secretary, Service Welfare Office (SWO) in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF), Dr. Ngozi Onwudiwe, disclosed that the Public Service is instrumental to the formulation and implementation of policies, programmes and projects of Government for the socio-economic development of human and material resources.
She buttressed that the Federal Government has shown commitment and support in the reforms of the Federal Civil Service by approving the Federal Civil Service Strategy and Implementation Plan 2021 - 2025 (FCSSIP 25).
The FCSSIP 25 is intended to redefine and reposition the Public Service to enable it respond effectively to the dynamics of the time in creating a conducive work environment for efficient service delivery in the 21st century.
Accordingly, the sixth pillar of (FCSSIP) 25 is targeted at improving Staff Welfare, with a prioritized initiative for enhancing value proposition of Civil Servants.
The Head of Service explained further that some of the welfare initiatives by the OHCSF includes:
i. The Federal Public Service Entrepreneurship Programme (FPSEP), which was recently launched in Abuja, expected to increase the streams of income for serving and exiting Public Servants.
The programme was developed, according to the Permanent Secretary, out of the need to pay greater attention to the welfare of Public Servants. It also creates windows of opportunities for those in service to earn supplementary income to improve their quality of life and enable those retiring to cope with life after Service.
ii. The Federal Civil Service Bus Scheme was launched on 21st June, 2022 with the intention to ease transportation challenges of Civil Servants. The goal of the scheme is to provide affordable and convenient transportation for workers to and from their workplaces, thereby improving productivity.
iii. OHCSF also introduced the ‘Awards and Recognition Scheme’ to appreciate hardworking Civil Servants, who distinguished themselves in their performances in order to boost their morale for greater output.
In the year 2022 Awards and Recognition Ceremony, forty (40) Civil Servants, whose performances were outstanding, received cash prizes of five hundred thousand Naira (N500, 000.00) each and a star prize of an SUV was won by one of the ten (10) most outstanding officers, through a competitive raffle draw.
She called on all stakeholders at the Federal and State levels to continuously collaborate and embrace the tenets of integrity, merit, performance and transparency in the conduct of Government business in consonance with the ethics of the Service.
Earlier, His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State, Engr. Abdullahi Sule, who was represented by the Acting Head of the Civil Service, Nasarawa State, Mrs Abigail Waya, commended the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation for her transformative agenda on the Civil Service. She expressed satisfaction in the reform programmes of the Federal Government, through the OHCSF, adding that Nigerian workers deserved the best.
In his remarks, the President, Joint National Public Service Negotiating Council (JNPSNC), Trade Union Side (TUS), Comrade Benjamin Anthony, urged Government to take an urgent step in addressing the situation of the country and improve on the electronic monetary transaction system in Nigeria, also look at the various Bank charges on transfer and other sundry transactions.
He, however, lamented that most of the decisions taken at the previous meetings have not been implemented because those decisions are scrutinized by the whims and caprices of the National Council on Establishment (NCE).
He added that it will be ideal for the JNPSNC (TUS) to be included as a member of NCE.
Goodwill messages were delivered by the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, the President, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Joe Ajero and the President, Trade Union Congress, Mr Festus Osifo.
M. A. Ahmed,
30th March, 2023.