‘Sule’s socio-economic reform transforming Nasarawa’
Thirty-five years after its creation, Gov. Abdullahi Sule is transforming the hitherto civil service status of Nasarawa State into a business hub through purposeful reform and human capital development.
The governor, through unusual diplomacy, has also restored peace to the agrarian communities, thereby attracting investments from the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and other neighbours. The Guardian’s finding shows that this is raising the economic profile of the state.
Sule has embarked on civil service reforms to ensure an effective and transparent system that would reduce corruption and drive technology-driven civil service in the state.
Civil service reform is a deliberate action, according to Sule, to improve the efficiency, effectiveness, professionalism and democratic character of civil service, to promote better service delivery services while increasing accountability.
The governor is determined to reform, transform and rebuild the civil service as a tool for achieving socio-economic development.
His focus, according to observers, stems from his experience in the organised private sector. Working in conglomerates must have acquainted him with managerial skills and acknowledging the importance of staff welfare in achieving goals.
On assumption of office, the governor inaugurated a 12-man committee chaired by a retired permanent secretary, Silas Dachor Jarumi, for the restructuring of the state public service.
“The government views the current structure of government machinery to be unwieldy, duplicative and not cost-effective.
“Accordingly, the government decided to devise a means of reducing the cost of governance, increase efficiency and maximise manpower utilisation,” the governor had said.
He, however, maintained that civil servants would be exposed to rigorous courses, seminars and workshops to sharpen their knowledge and experience for enhanced performance and productivity.
Following the submission of the reports by the Jarumi-led committee in August 2019, the governor carried out the restructuring of ministries and departments, streamlining them for efficient management and effective service delivery.
Looking back to those early days of the reforms, stakeholders have commended the Sule administration for ensuring that no civil servant lost his or her job due to the reorganisation of the service.
Besides, the governor’s commitment to resolving lingering promotions and to appropriately place workers for improved welfare and enhanced productivity is also paying off.
The government has offset over 10-year outstanding promotion allowances owed to the workers. Also, Nasarawa State, in June, commenced the payment of the new national minimum wage of N30,000, kicking off implementation with levels 1-6. The implementation came after a series of meetings by the committee set up by the government to look into the matter.
The administration also embarked on the training and retraining of civil servants for effective and efficient service delivery as part of the civil service reform.
Recently, the government commenced training for civil servants in the state on data processing as part of measures toward the economic growth of the state.