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NECA seeks policy stability in new administration

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The Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA), has called on the Federal Government to ensure sustained commitment on the stability of economic policies, social investment programmes and deepening of engagement with the private sector in President Muhammadu Buhari’s second term.

While stating some of the business implications of Buhari’s re-election, NECA advised that issues of politics should be set aside while good governance takes a centre stage in the new administration.

The Director-General of NECA, Timothy Olawale, who said the Association does not expect any deviation from the administrations policies, argued that concerted efforts must be made to revive moribund industries, support struggling enterprises, create a responsible regulatory regime and focus on inclusive growth for the rapid development of the country.

According to him, the government has another four years opportunity to reverse the negative trends and prognosis associated with the nation in the last four years. He posited that regulatory gangstarism reached a new height in the first four years of the Buhari-led administration.

While calling on the President to ensure that the trend is brought to a stop, Olawale said: “As the President was making efforts to ease the challenges of doing business in Nigeria, some regulatory agencies were stifling businesses, discouraging entrepreneurial propensity of small and medium scale entities and inadvertently creating the environment for job losses. A collaborative engagement of the private sector and creation of an environment for it to thrive is the only panacea to the raging threat of unemployment in our nation.”

Meanwhile the Association of Senior Civil Servants of Nigeria (ASCSN), has warned that the constant threats to sack civil servants is counterproductive, and can lead to loss of faith in the system and low productivity of workers.

The Association posited that those clamouring for a big cut on the claims, that the civil service is over-bloated, should let Nigerians know which part of the service they are referring to, noting that the so-called mischievous experts should be ignored since they do not have an idea of what the civil service vis-a-vis the public service entails.

It advised those waging a war against civil servants to desist forthwith, as they are the least paid when compared with the emoluments of employees in the other segments of the public service.

A statement signed by Secretary-General, ASCSN, Alade Bashir Lawal, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to be wary of mischievous individuals and failed experts, who are bent on derailing his administration but pretending to wish him well.

The ASCSN advised the President to remain focused and committed to his promise to improve the welfare of civil servants to motivate them to attain greater productivity.

The Association also urged President Buhari to restore tenure policy in the Civil Service for permanent secretaries and directors, and also reverse the practice of recruiting permanent secretaries from outside the service.

ASCSN argued that both policies have continued to demoralise senior civil servants, who have devoted their entire productive years serving their fatherland only to be denied the opportunity to reach the peak of their career.

The statement reads in part: “We recalled that after President Buhari won the 2015 presidential poll, some disgruntled elements masquerading as experts started to urged him to descend on the civil service which they ignorantly claimed was over-bloated while simultaneously accusing civil servants of being corrupt without substantiating their allegations.

“As you begin your second term in office, Mr President, we will not be surprised if this retinue of sycophants start again to beat their war drums against civil servants and the civil service claiming as usual that the civil service is over-bloated while civil servants are corrupt all in an attempt to pitch your regime against public service employees.

“What these pseudo experts do not seem to understand is that there is a marked difference between the civil service made up of line Ministries and their Departments and other Agencies of Government, the union stated.

The association insisted that that the staff strength of the core civil service is about 80,000 in a country of about 200 million people, adding that the population of the entire public service is about 960,000.


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