The inadequacies in the Nigerian civil service system were exposed as it has been revealed that no fewer than 9,000 civil servants who sat for the 2022 Federal Civil Service Commission’s promotion examinations failed the exams. This development got Nigerians worried and lots of reaction trailed this development which some Nigerians referred to as unfortunate.
It was gathered that out of about 13,000 civil servants that sat for the examination, which was held in about 69 Computer Based Test Centres across the country, over 9000 failed. This left the number of successful candidates around 4000.
According to the report obtained by the Daily Post, the list of the workers’ performance which was obtained from the Federal Civil Service Commission highlighted that candidates were drawn from the core civil service, including the Nigeria Police, and other paramilitary and specialised agencies.
The report also said that the letter containing the list of successful civil servants was dated November 30, 2023, and sent from the Federal Civil Service Commission.
A close look at the list that leaked into the Public domain shows that only 3,851 civil servants, out of over 13,000 civil servants who sat for the promotion examination passed, while the rest failed. Nigerians have been reacting, with many saying that the major problem that the country faces today is a lack of professionalism among the civil servants.
One Livinus Eze, a mechanical engineer told the DAILY POST, “I remember in those days, when civil servants were held in high esteem because they were believed to be highly cerebral.
“Those days, when you hear that somebody is a permanent secretary, you would know that such a person is an embodiment of experience, competence, and intelligence. But, what do we have today? We have a bunch of mediocre people, parading themselves as civil servants.”
How did the country descend into such a low ebb?
In securednaija.com follow up vox pop to find out what Nigerians feel about this report as obtained by Daily Post, some of our interviewees described the situation as unfortunate. Mrs Biodun Ogunsolure, a private businesswoman who according to her had first class from a higher institution lamented how she suffered and struggled to get a Civil Service Job but could not. She said its unfortunate that the system will allowed dull people to have their ways while the brilliant ones are forsaken. According to her, “the result is showing everywhere, on the economy, sport, finances, governance, and reputation of the country”.
Also in securednaija interview, many people decried the quota system which allowed recruitment to the civil service to be based on filling vacancies based on state and regional slots. Some also revealed that there is nothing wrong with the quota system but a lack of self-development by the civil servants after getting federal work. This opinion is also in line with the responses gotten by the Daily Post.
A respondent who begged for anonymity thought that if a nation’s civil service is not professional enough and millennium compliant, he said such a nation will surely lack behind amongst the committee of nations, Saying, the outcome of the exams shows that our civil servants are not ready.
While speaking to DAILY POST, he stressed that its implication was low productivity as no man can give what he does not have.
“The implication is that unqualified people are occupying positions in the civil service, meaning that productivity will be very low. Memos will not be up to the standards they ought to be. And of course, performance in the civil service will be declining.
“But that is not a new thing because the unnecessary bureaucracy, which the civil service shows clearly is a function of this kind of performance.
“When incompetent people are occupying positions, of course, their performance will be below standard, and rather than doing things correctly, unnecessary bureaucracy comes in and the whole system suffers as a result,” he said.
On the way forward, he stressed the urgent need for training and retraining of the civil servants.
Also, Mr Dele Ogundinade said: “there is the need for training and retraining.”
On his part, speaking to Daily Post, the President of the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum, AYCF, Alhaji Yerima Shettima, commended the Commission for conducting the promotion exam as a way of assessing the capacity of the civil servants.
He, however, decried the outcome, which he said was disappointing and an indication that most of them were not even qualified to have been employed.
He however advise the government to encourage competence and promote it above the man-know-man approach or what some may like to call ‘connection’ in the recruitment process.