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Career management handbook_civil_service

Career Management Handbook for Nigerian Civil Service

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Career management handbook_civil_service

  1. 1. 1 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation CIVIL SERVICE HANDBOOK FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA Office of Head of Civil Service of the Federation Career Management Office
  2. 2. 2 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation TABLE OF CONTENT Page Foreword 4 Preface to the Third Edition 5 CHAPTER 1. Introduction 1 The Federal‟ and State Governments 1 2. Government Revenue and Expenditure 9 Collection of Government Revenue 12 Government Expenditure 13 Control of Expenditure 13 Cost Consciousness in spending Public Funds 14 3. Government Business 15 Section 1: Introduction 15 Section 2: What is the Civil Service arnd Why is it necessary 16 Section 3: Recruitment of Civil Servants 16 Section 4: Personnel Administration and Management 17 Section 5: Categories of Staff in the Federal and State Civil Services 17 Section 6: Reforms and Reviews in the Civil Service 20 Section 7: National Council on Establishments 27 Section 8: National Development Plans 24 4. Code of Ethics on Government Business 28 5. General Sources of information 36 6. Official Abbreviations 38 7. Basic Techniques of clear writing and forms of Communication 41 (a) Drafting 42 (b) Minuting 43 (c) Letters 46 (d) Endorsements 47 (e) Minutes of Meeting 48
  3. 3. 3 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (f) Memoranda 50 (g) Briefs 50 (h) File Notes 51 (I) Handing Over Notes 51 (j) Means of Official Communication in the Civil Service 52 8. In-coming and Out-going Mails 55 9. Classification and Numbering of Files 60 10. Indexing and Records 75 11. Miscellaneous Notes: 81 (I) Secretarial Staff 81 (ii) Registry Staff 82 (iii) Stores Staff 84 (iv) Drivers 85 (v) Messengers 85 12. General Information 86
  4. 4. 4 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation FOREWORD There are not many publications about the Civil Service that compare with the Civil Service Handbook in form and content. The existence of such a resource guide for the Civil Servants establishes their career prospects as it provides information on practically all aspects of the operations of the Service. The Civil Service Handbook was last published in 1972. Since then, the Civil Service has grown in structure and function which necessitates this review. I am satisfied with the content and depth of this review. Given the background of the various reforms, it is to be expected that the handbook will provide the much needed reorientation for every civil servant in the challenge of meeting new responsibilities. The Handbook should enjoy widespread circulation so that each and every officer will have free and unrestricted access to it whenever the need arises. I commend it to all civil servants. GIDADO IDRIS, CON, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, December‟ 1997
  5. 5. 5 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation PREFACE Like all manuals, the Civil Service Handbook has been published with a view to achieving specific objectives. It is first and foremost, a reference publication which every civil servant can feel confident to refer to whenever the need arises, especially Officers who are beginning their careers In the Civil Service. This publication has the additional purpose of informing them about the modus operandi of the civil service, and also enlightening them about what the service expects of them by way of conduct, behavior, commitment and professionalism. Indeed, this is why the publication is so rich in information about practically all aspects of public administration in Nigeria. It provides the foundation about the fundamentals of service. Including subject matters such, as the structure and function of Government as well as Government revenue and expenditure. A whole chapter is devoted to the conduct of Government business. Herein, the raison- d‟etre of the Civil Service is justified and the mode of administering the Civil Service is dutifully explained in simple and direct language which, even the most junior officer should have no problems in understanding. There are certain activities which every civil servant, irrespective of cadre, must engage in the course of his/her career. Among these are, writing of minutes and letters, taking minutes of meetings and making use of the services of the Registry. In recognition of this important point, a chapter in this publication is devoted to addressing various means of official communication in the civil service. In putting this publication together, it was considered necessary to have inputs from some arms of the Service. It is in this context that the Cabinet Secretariat provided information on the functions of the Provisional Ruling Council, the Federal Executive Council and the National Council on States. The Federal Ministry of Finance provided information Government Revenue and Expenditure while the National Planning Commission wrote on the National Development Plans. The section on Registry procedures was reviewed by the experts of Registry procedures from this Office. For this Handbook to serve the intended purpose, it should be reproduced in adequate numbers and made available to all members of staff. This should be seen as one of the primary Servants the right attitude and disposition. F. 0. Williams, Permanent Secretary (Establishments and Management Services). Office of Establishments and Management Services, The Presidency, Abuja. December 1997.
  6. 6. 6 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION SECTION 1 During Civilian Rule, the Federal or State Government consists o the –Legislature, the Executive and the Judiciary. At the Federal level, the Legislature is known as the National Assembly. In a State, the Legislature may be referred to as the House of Assembly. 2. The Legislature is the law-making body. It is also responsible for approving the budget of Government. 3. The Executive applies the law (or the series of Decrees under Military Rule) which is enforced by the Judiciary. 4. The Cabinet (the Council of Ministers or Executive Council) is responsible for deciding policies or the activities of Government. 5. Government policies are carried out by the Executive called Ministers and Extra-Ministerial Department and “Parastatals”. 6. The Chief Executive of a Ministry is usually a Minister of Cabinet rank. In some large Ministries, there are Ministers of State, who assist the Chief Executives, Extra-Ministerial Department/Agencies usually have their Chief Executives designated as Chairmen, e.g. The Federal Civil Service Commission. As for the Parastatals depending on the enabling legislation, the Chief Executive is usually designated as either Managing Director; Director-General Manager. 7. In addition to the post of Chief Executive, each Ministry or Extra-Ministerial department usually has a Permanent Secretary Director General/ Secretary who is the Accounting Officer of the establishment. 8. Parastatals, Government owned Companies and Statutory Agencies are usually attached to Ministries or the Presidency for purposes of supervision and co-ordination. 9. The Civil Service consists of Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Departments. The Public Service on the other hand, in addition to the Civil Service, encompasses the Armed Forces, the Judiciary, the Police, Government Institutions, Parastatals, Government owned Companies and Statutory Agencies. 10. The work of the Civil Service is classified into groups of related matters which arc assigned to Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Departments of the Government. 11. Every Chief Executive has general responsibility for the assignment of corporate objectives and management of the resources of the Establishment. LOCAL GOVERNMENT There is a third tier of Government in Nigeria called the Local Government. Officials employed in the Local Governments are also Civil Servants. However Local Governments are less elaborately structured in comparison with the Federal and States Governments. The Chief Executive of each Local Government is designated as Chairman and the post is elective. The career Civil Servant in the set up is the Secretary.
  7. 7. 7 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation MILITARY REGIMES 13. The advent of Military Regimes in Nigeria started on 15th January, 1966. When the armed forces assumed the reins of Government in the Republic for the first time. Since then there have been a few other military administrations. The present one came into power in November 1993. 14. One common feature of this form of Government is that the Executive and the Legislature are fused into one. Currently, the Head of Government is designated as Head of State, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, while each Ste Government is headed by a Military Administrator. At the Federal level, the Chief Executives of Ministries are designated as Ministers and they form the Federal Executive Council while at the State level, they are designated as Commissioners. 15. The Federal Government is made up of three principal organs, viz: Provisional Ruling Council (PRC), the National Council of States (NCS) and the Federal Executive Council (FEC). 16. Functions of the Principal Organs of the Federal Government. Provisional Ruling Council (PRC) (i) Determination, from time to time, of the general direction of government policy and national policy on major issue affecting the Federal Republic of Nigeria (ii) Constitutional matters including amendments to the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; (iii) Promulgation of Decrees, Regulations and Orders enforceable throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria; (iv) All national security matters, including the authority to declare war or proclaim a state of emergency or martial law; (v) Appointment of the Head of State of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Commander-in-Chief, the Chief of General Staff, Military Administrators. Members of the National Council of States and the Federal Executive Council; (vi) Ratification of the appointment of such senior public officers‟ as the Council may from time to time specify; (vii) General supervision of the work of the National Council of States and the Federal Executive Council. National Council of States (i) Policy guidelines on financial and economic matters and social affairs in so far as they affect the States; (ii) Participation in the formulation and general implementation of National Development Plans; (iii) Advising the Provisional Ruling Council on constitutional matters especially as they affect the States; and (iv) Such order matters as the Provisional Ruling Council may from time to time determine.
  8. 8. 8 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation Federal Executive Council (FEC) determining policies of the Federal Government within the framework which may from time to time be determined by the Provisional Ruling Council. The Secretary the Government of the Federation is the Secretary to all the three Councils the Provisional Ruling Council, the National Council of States and the Federal Executive Council. EXECUTION OF INSTRUMENTS 18. All instruments made by the Head of the Federal Government or the Provisional Ruling Council (PRC) may be executed under the hand of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation while all instruments made by the Federal Executive Council may be executed under the hand of the Minister of the Ministry responsible for the matter in question or under the hand of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation. 19. All the States, the instruments made by the Military Administration may be execute under the hand of the Secretary to the State Government or the Commissioner to the Ministry responsible for the matter in question.
  9. 9. 9 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation CHAPTER 2 GOVERNMENT REVENUE AND EXPENDITURE The term “Public Finance” is also referred to as “Government Finance” or “Public Moneys” It is defined by Section 2 of the Finance (Control and Management Act of 1958 to include; (a) The Public Revenue of the Federation. (b) Any money held in his official Capacity whether subject to ay trust or specific location or not by any officer in the public service of the Federation or by any agent of the government neither alone or jointly with any other person. 2. Modern day governments become involved in economies via; intervention through fiscal policy using discretionary changes in the levels of government taxes expenditure and borrowings to achieve desired socio-political and macro-economic objectives. 3. However, public finance or government revenue refers to various sources of income to the government-Revenue can be classified into broadly two sections, namely: (a) Oil Revenue (b) Non-Oil Revenue. (i) OIL REVENUE includes petroleum profit tax, rent royalties and government Crude Oil Sales, and proceeds from domestic consumption. Etc. (ii) Non-OIL REVENUE refers to direct taxes. Company tax. Income tax. Personal Income tax. Petroleum Profit tax, etc. a. Indirect taxes include excise duties, import duties, purchase tax, etc. (iii) Tax revenue and non-tax revenue. The tax revenue includes or consists of both direct and indirect taxes while the non-tax revenue refers to income accruable to the government outside its taxes such as operating surplus from its parastatals. 4. In many cases, Government Revenue is classified into Heads and Sub-Heads as shown in the examples below: 5. Government Revenue or Moneys accruing to the government to meet its services are derived from various sources but largely from oil revenue and additional revenues from non-oil revenue. The bulk is derived from oil revenue. 1. Oil Revenue Comprising Mainly: (i) Joint Venture Cash Calls Royalty (JVC) (ii) Petroleum Profit Tax; (iii) Rent: (iv) NNPC Earning from Direct Sales, Sales of Gas (Crude Oil Sales). (v) Proceeds from Domestic Market: (vi) Penalty from Gs Flared;
  10. 10. 10 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (vii) Pipeline Licenses and other fees: (viii) Excise and VAT on Domestic Crude. 2. Non-Oil Revenue: (i) Customs and Excise; (ii) Direct Taxes; (iii) Mining. A Head 001: Customs and Excise: Sub-Heads (i) Import Duties; (ii) Export Duties; (iii) Excise Duties; (iv) Fees. B Head 002: Direct Taxes; Sub-Heads (i) Company Income Tax; (ii) Federal Government Independent Revenue (iii) Value Added Tax (iv) Technical Committee on Privatization and Commercialization (TCPC); (v) Pump Price of Petroleum Product (PTF) (vi) Back Duty Penalties; (vii) Capital Gains Tax; (viii) Surcharge on Pioneer Companies; (ix) Personal Income Tax; (x) Pump Duties and Penalties. C Head 003; Mining: Sub-Heads (i) Oil Pipelines Licence Fees; (ii) Rent on Mineral Licences; (iii) Royalty on Oil and Gs Sales; (iv) NNPC Earning from Direct Sales; (v) Sales of Crude oil for Domestic Consumption; (vi) Penalty for Gas Flared. D Heads 004 and 005: (Vacant) E Head 006: Statutory Allocation from Federation Account: Sub-Heads Federal Government share of Federation Account. F Head 007: Direct Taxes: Sub-Heads (i) Personal Income Tax: Armed Forces, Police and Foreign Affairs: (ii) Personal Income Tax: Federal” Capital Territory Residents: (iii) Company pre-Operation Levy; (iv) Sales Tax in Abuja:
  11. 11. 11 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (v) National Economic Recovery Fund Arrears; (vi) Personnel Income Tax: Non-Residents; (vii) Capital Gains Tax I,TD (ESG); (viii) Non-Resident Individual I.T.D. (RS); (ix) Non-Resident Company I.T.D. (RC); (x) Value Added Tax (VAT). GHead 008: Licences and Internal Revenue: Sub-Heads (i) Goldsmith and Gold Dealer Licences; (ii) Radio and Station Licences; (iii) Arms and Ammunition Licences, etc H Head 009: Mining: Sub-Heads (i) Mining Fees; (ii) Penalties for Arrears of Rent, etc (iii) Royalty on Tin. I Head 0010: Fees: Sub-Heads (i) Supreme Court/Industrial Court; (ii) Trade Marks: Fees; (iii) Company and Business Name: Fees; (iv) Passport Fes; (v) Deeds Registration Fees (F.M.W.& H) J Head 0011: Earnings and Sales: Sub-Heads (i) Earnings and Sales (Aviation); (ii) Earnings and Sales (G.C.A.); (iii) Establishments and Stores; (iv) Prisons, etc. K Head 0012: Rent on Government Property: Sub-Head (i) Rent on Federal Government quarters, Junior Staff; (ii) Fees for Temporary Occupation; (iii) Oil Plot Rents and Aerodromes, etc. L Head 0013: Interests and Repayments: General: Sub-Heads (i) Investments General; (ii) Joint Consolidated Fund; (iii) Stock Transfer: (iv) Central Bank Operation: (v) Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) operating Surplus etc, MHead 0014: Interest and Repayments: State Government: Sub-Heads (i) 1959 FRN 1st Development Loan Stock Interest; (ii) 1959 RN 1st Development Loan: Sinking Fund;
  12. 12. 12 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (iii) 1961 Exchange Loan: interest; (iv) UK Exchange Loan: interest. N Head 0015: Reimbursement (8): Sub-Heads (i) Reimbursement of Audit fees: (ii) Police Secondment fees and Reimbursements; (iii) Aviation Unity Service, Kano and Ikeja; (iv) Cost of collection of Customs and Excise; (v) Revenue part Reimbursement State Government, etc. OHead 0016: Armed Forces: Sub-Heads (i) Rent; (ii) Sales; (iii) Electricity and Water Receipt P Head 0017: Miscellaneous: Sub-Heads (i) Refund of over payment; (ii) Deposit of lapse; (iii) Sundries. ANNUAL ESTIMATES 4. Between July and August each year, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development sends to the Accounting Officers of each Ministry and Extra-Ministerial Departments a circular letter known as the “Call Circular” which includes detailed regulations for the preparation and submission of the Estimates. It requires each Accounting Officer to submit the Estimates for the anticipated revenue, recurrent and capital expenditure of the votes administered by the Department for the financial year beginning on the following 1st January. These details normally cover the period between 1st January and 31st of December, of the year (commonly referred to ss “financial” or fiscal” year) it should be stated, however, that there is no special significance for the date fixed for the beginning and end of the financial year. Collection of Government Revenue 5. In varying degrees, several Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Departments in the Federal and States Civil Services are responsible for collecting Government revenue. As many of the social and other services that the Government may provide for the people depend on the size of Government revenue, it is extremely important that accounting Officers (Permanent Secretaries and Departmental Heads) and their staff in revenue earning Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Department should do all they can to collect alt he moneys due to government. 6. Time and again in hi career, an officer may be called upon to help in collecting Government Revenue. In his regard. The Accounting Officer of the Ministry of Ex- Ministerial Department will ensure that the provisions of the Financial Regulations are complied with.
  13. 13. 13 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation Government Expenditure 7. Government expenditure in Ministries and Extra – Ministerial Department are mainly as follows: (i) Recruitment Expenditure; and (ii) Capital Expenditure. 8. The salaries and wages of the civilian establishment in the 12month period from the 1st January to the 31st December are shown under Recurrent Expenditure Head in the Annual Estimate. 9. The Recurrent Expenditure for Government Ministries and Extra- Ministerial Departments are expenditures which recur year. After year, They mainly relate to the votes for the salaries, wages and allowances of public servants. 10. The Capital Expenditures of Government are the costs of capital works and projects, e.g. Kanji Dam. Office buildings hospitals. Bridges, etc undertaken by Government.. CONTROL OF EXPENDITURES 11. The control of Government Finance in Civilian regime is exercise both by National Assembly and through the Executive. 12. The main feature of such control is that no money should be spent except approved by the National Assembly. The body responsible for querying malpractices in the expenditure of the budget approved by the National Assembly is called the Public Accounts Committee. It is a committee of the National Assembly and is responsible to it. Its members are elected, and most of them are from the majority party in the National Assembly. The opposition is also represented on the committee. The Auditor-General for the Federation is always in attendance at examining sessions of the committee and it is on the basis of his advice that enquiries are conducted. 13. The financial responsibilities Government Officers are laid down by law and regulations from time to time by the Minister of Finance. The officer chiefly responsible for the receipts and payments of Government funds in a Ministry or Extra-Ministerial Department of Government is called the Accounting officer. In a Ministry, the Accounting officer is the Permanent Secretary. The Accounting Officer of an Extra-Ministerial Department is the Head of the Department. Federal Government Financial Regulations define the term “Account Officer” as the Officer” of the Ministry or Extra-Ministerial Department, whom the Ministry of Finance regards as primarily responsible, for the control of all funds voted for services provided by the Ministry/Extra-Ministerial Department within the ambit of the Ministry or Extra Ministerial Department”. 14. The Chief Accounting Officer of Government is Accountant General of the Federation. His counterpart in a stat Government is called Accountant-General. He is responsible for all the receipts and payments of non-self accounting departments. In accordance with the Financial Regulations, “he is also responsible for the general supervision of the counts of all Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Departments within the federation “and for the compilation of the Annual financial
  14. 14. 14 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation statements of accounts and such other statements of accounts as may be required by the National Assembly or by the Minister of Finance”. 15. Constitutionally, the Federal Auditor General is responsible for “the audit of accounts of all Accounting Officers and all persons entrusted with the collections, reports, custody, sales, transfer or delivery of any securities stores or other property of the Government of the Federation and the certification of the Annual Accounts of the Federal Government. Cost-consciousness in spending Public Funds 16. All Civil Servants should be cost-conscious in spending public funds on behalf of Government. Extravagance may be checked in the following ways: (a) Every Officer or employee should justly his employment by giving efficient services in return for his earning. (b) Every official expenditure should be duly authorised by an appropriate authority, as required by regulation; (c) The expenditure should be in accordance with the Financial Regulations; (d) Staff recruitment should be dictated by real needs so that under-employent and over establishment is avoided. (e) Economy should be exercised in buying office furniture, equipment and stationery; (f) Made-in-Nigeria goods should be preferred to imported goods: (g) No Officer should condone wasteful spending of public funds by other civil servants.
  15. 15. 15 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation CHAPTER 3 GOVERNMENT BUSINESS SECTION 1 Introduction 1. Under Civilian dispensation, the law making power of Government is vested in the National Assembly whose members are elected by Nigerians. Members of the National Assembly or House of Assembly in a State represent the people. The economic political and social welfare of all Nigerians and law-abiding foreigners are their main concern. 2. It should be noted that the Federal Government has responsibility for specified matters such as Foreign Affairs, Defence, Police, Banking, Trunk „A‟ Roads. Agricultural Research, Pasts and Telecommunications,. Aviation, etc. 3. Sometimes Federal and State Governments share responsibility for different aspects of the same subject e.g. Health, Education and Economic Development. These matters usually appear in the concurrent List in the Constitution. 4. Residual powers relate to matters upon which states Government in Nigeria are empowered to legislate e.g. social welfare, co-operative societies, etc. 5. Though the National Assembly makes the laws of the Federal Government and aalso approves the budget, it does not implement its laws. 6. It is the duty and responsibility of the Cabinet to determine Government policies on various matters, e.g. Health Education, etc. However it is the duty of the Civil Service to help in formulating and implementing Government policies. To be able to assign responsibility for specific activities or groups of activities, the Civil Service is divided into Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Departments.
  16. 16. 16 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation SECTION 2 What is the Civil Service and why is it necessary? 7. (A) The Civil Service is a body or organ which enjoys continuity of existence. Its members unlike members of the National Assembly or a House of Assembly are not limited to a short term of office at the end of which they or may not be returned to office. Elected in members come and go but Cvl Servants remain in office. When a civil servant relinquished his office for what ever reason, his place is taken by another person who similarly enjoys security of employment. (B) Collectively, Civil Servants command a pool of experience and know-how for implementing Government Policies. The Civil Service is the instrument of the Government of the day but neither the service nor its members are the partisan of any particular political party. (C) A Civil Servant is required to assist in formulating and implementing the policies approved by Government whatever his personal or private opinions or attitudes may be. This does not mean that a Civil Servant should undertake illegal action: if so directed, be should invite attention immediately to the legal position or requirement and advise on the proper action to take. He has the duty also to advise, on the implications of a policy or action. (D) The Civil Service is indispensable irrespective of the type of regime whether Military or Civilian. Indeed. Under the Military Rule or sudden change of Government it is even more incumbent on the Civil Service to continue its traditional role as a means of ensuring that the orderly administration of the Country is continuous. SECTION 3 Recruitment of Civil Servants 8. Recruitment of Federal Civil Servants is vested in the Federal Civil Service Commission whose establishment is provided for in the constitution. It is headed by a Chairman. Its membership has recently been enlarged to 15. 9. The Federal Civil Service Commission has no power for the appointments that are the exclusive responsibility of the Head of State or other arms/functionaries of Government. E.g. (a) A judge of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. (b) Any Officer in the Nigerian Police Force. (c) Principal Representatives of the Republic of Nigeria Overseas such as Ambassadors and High Commissioners. (d) Justice of the Peace
  17. 17. 17 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation 10. From time to time the Federal Civil Service Commission delegates its authority in respect of appointments, promotion and discipline of specified staff to Ministries Extra-Ministerial Departments. It may also issue from time to time guidelines as deemed appropriate. 11. Like the Federal Civil Service, every State Civil Service has its Civil Service Commission which is responsible for appointments, transfers and secondment, promotions and discipline. At its discretion, a State Civil Service Commission may delegate some of its powers to Ministries/Extra- Ministerial Departments. 12. As a rule, communications to any Civil Service Commission are addressed to the Chairman of that Commission. In order to accelerate clearance of matters by the Commission. Officers should be conversant with the extant Government Regulations and Guidelines SECTION 4 Personnel Administration and Management 13. The Government like order organizations must have workers of different categories in order to realize its objectives and discharge its responsibilities. The staff complement should neither be too large nor too small. If it is too large, some of the staff may not have enough work to do. The salaries and wages of such people would be unjustifiable. If the complement is too small, some people would be overworked. Some limitation must be imposed on the gradings of staff for purposes of salaries and wages. This is the function of the office of Establishments and Management Service which reviews establishments in Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Department periodically in the interest of economy, efficiency, effectiveness and stability Note- Establishment work is essentially management an organisation and the maintenance of accurate records. The Office of Establishments and Management Services is, in other words, responsible for staff administration and welfare in the Federal Civil Service. SECTION 5 Categories of Staff in the Federal and State Civil Services 14. Before the regarding of the posts in the Federal Civil Service by Messrs L.H. Gorsuch and George Randell between 1954 and 1956. There were the Junior and Senior Services. While the former consisted mainly of Nigerians the latter was composed of European Officers termed as Expatriates. The thin link between the two services was the small number on the Executive Staff. 15. The integrated structure which exists in Federal and State Services today is like a pyramid. From the top to bottom, this pyramid has the following classes of officers and employees: (i) Administrative, Professional and Scientific/Research Officers. (ii) Executive and Technical Classes; (iii) Secretarial Class: (iv) Clerical/Junior Technical and sub-Clerical/Sub-Technical Classes: and
  18. 18. 18 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (v) Miscellaneous and Unestablished/grades. The Administrative Class 16. One of the most important groups in the Federal and State Civil Service is the Administrative Class whose raison d‟etre and function drive from our Ministerial and Parliamentary system of Government. The Ministers have vested in them executive powers. They are variably not specialists in the work of their departments but they arc the embodiment of the yearning, aspirations, attitude and desires of the people. They take policy decisions on behalf of the community as a whole. In order to make it possible for Ministers to carry out their functions efficiently and effectively, they are supported by a body of staff, under the leadership pf Permanent Secretaries. Which should bring to bear on the work of the Department the objectives of the Ministers. It is for this group to bring together the many and diverse views involved in matters requiring policy decisions to advise on the appropriate decisions and subsequently to put them into effect. 17. For example, the Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Health cannot deal with every aspect of the problem in his own Ministry without the support and co-operation of other Ministerial and Extra- Ministerial Departments. The following actions may be necessary: (1) A memorandum to the council of Ministers/Executive Council setting out the case for necessary fund has to be cleared first with the Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Finance; (2) New posts which should be created will be referred for approval to the office of Establishments and Management Services of the Presidency; (3) A capital Development Project has to be vetted by the National Planning Commission; (4) When the project is finally approved by Government, the Civil Service Commission will appoint qualified Officers for the new posts necessitated by the decision to build more hospitals and new health centres. Administrative Class posts 18. The existing posts in the administrative Class are as follows: (1) Secretary to the Government of the Federation/Head of the Civil Service: (2) Permanent Secretaries in Ministries (3) Director (4) Deputy Director (5) Assistant Director (6) Chief Administrative Officer (7) Assistant Chief Administrative Officer (8) Principal Administrative Officer (9) Senior Administrative Officer (10) Administrative Officer Grade I (11) Administrative Officer Grade II
  19. 19. 19 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation The Executive Class and Technical Class 19 Grade Level 06 upwards applies to the member of the Executive Class and Technical Class. Their duties are of a general nature, including routine accounting and sub-professional work. Executive Class Officers who perform non-technical duties discharge considerable supervisory work. This non- technical class falls into the two groups below: (i) Executive Officers (General Duties) and (ii) Executive Officers (Account) 20 The grading of their posts are as follows: Executive Officers (General Duties) Executive Officers (Accounts) Assistant Executive Officer Assistant Executive Officer Executive Officer Executive Officer Higher Executive Officer Higher Executive Officer Senior Executive Officer Senior Executive Officer Principal Executive Officer II Principal Executive Officer II Principal Executive Officer I Principal Executive Officer I Assistant Chief Executive Officer Assistant Chief Executive Officer Chief Executive Officer Chief Executive Officer 21. Deserving members of the Executive Class may be converted to the Administrative Class or, if they are engaged in accounting work to the cadre of Accountants. 22. Officers who perform technical duties for which technical or technological, rather than professional qualifications are necessary, are graded in Grade Level 06 upwards. The following grades apply to them: (i) Assistant Technical Officer: (ii) Technical Officer: (iii) Higher Technical Officer; (iv) Senior Technical Officer; (v) Principal Technical Officer; (vi) Assistant Chief Technical Officer; (vii) Chief Technical Officer.
  20. 20. 20 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation Clerical and Sub-Clerical Classes 23. The following posts exists in both the Federal and State Civil Services: Clerical Assistant GL.03 Clerical Officer, Grade II GL.04 Clerical Officer, Grade I GL.05 Senior Clerical Officer GL.06 Chief Clerical Officer GL.07 24. The minimum educational qualification of direct entrants to the Clerical Grade is the West African School Certificate with two credits plus three passes at one sitting (including English Language) or three credits plus two passes at one sitting (including English Language) or six passé at one sitting (including English Language) or the General Certificate of Education (Ordinary Level) with passes in at least four subjects including English Language. Promising members of the Clerical Class may be promoted to the Executive Class from the grade of Senior Clerical Officer and above. 25. The Sub-Clerical consists of Clerical Assistant. 26. The minimum educational qualification a Clerical assistant is Certificate S.75 or Secondary IV Clerical Assistants who have done two years service may be promoted to the Standard Clerical Grade if they pass the combined Confirmation/Promotion Test at promotional level. Junior Technical and Sub-Technical Classes 27. The qualifications of the employees in this grade are same as those of Clerical and Sub-Clerical Grades, although a pass in the science subjects such as Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Biology is essential for appointment. The members of this class are usually found in the professional Ministries and Extra-Ministerial Departments. SECTION 6 REFORMS AND REVIEWS IN THE CIVIL SERVICE 28. In order to make the Nigerian Civil Service more effective and efficient, many Commissions were set up to review the Civil Service. The focus had generally been to review salaries/wages and other conditions of service rather than structural and attitudinal charges. For example, the Tudor Davis and Haragin Commissions of 1945 and 1946 were primarily concerned with the review of wages and general conditions of service. However, the Harraign Salary Review Commission made some structural changes by introducing the senior service” and the “Junior Service” thus dividing the service into two rigid compartments. The Gorsuch Commission set up in 1951, to enquire into the structure and remuneration of the Public Service, concluded that the rigid division of the service into
  21. 21. 21 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation “Senior” and “Junior” services was defective in view of the absence of a viable middle category. It therefore, recommended that the service by reorganized into five main grades from the lowest established posts upwards. This was to remain the basic structure of the Civil service until the Udoji Public Service Review Commission introduced the Unified Grading and Salary Structure (UGSS) in 1975. 29. The Hewn Committee was set up in 1959. It made proposals for the integration of Ministries and Departments, defined the roles and functions of Permanent Secretaries and evolved administrative machinery for the operation of Ministries. The Mbanefo salaries and Wages Commission had as its major concern the review of salaries and wages in the public service. 30. The Morgan Commission was set up in 1963 for the review of the wages, salaries and conditions of service of the junior employees of the Government of the Federation and of private establishments. It introduced for the first time a minimum wage in the country on geographical basis. Arising from the Morgan Report the Government appointed the Elwood Grading Team to enquire into any anomalies in the gradings and other condition relating to all posts in the public Service of the Federation with a view to determining appropriate gradings and achieving uniformity in the salaries of officers performing identical duties. The combination of the Morgan and Elwood exercise gave the Civil Service some motivation through improved compensation for advancement to higher grade positions. Schemes of service now exist and they specify the duties of each posts method of entry, including qualification requirements and the prerequisites for or advancement within and beyond cadres. 31. There was also the Adebo Salaries and Wages Review Commission of 1971 which recommended the setting up of a Public Service Review Commission to exhaustively examine several fundamental issues like the role f the Public Commission, the structure of the Civil Service, its condition of service and training arrangements. Government accepted this recommendation and set up the Udoji Public Service Review Commission in 1912. The Udoji Commission focused primarily on the larger issue of increasing efficiency and effectiveness in the public servant within the context of meeting the challenges of a development oriented society. The commission made recommendations designed to improve the structure and the system. It introduced the open reporting system of performance evaluation, unified grading and salary structure covering all post in the civil servant and the creation of the unified senior management group comprising both administrative offices and professionals whose careers should be centrally managed. 32. Despite all these well meaning effort by the late 1980s. The Nigeria civil service was far from been ideal. It was tradition bound, somewhat ponderous and showing signs of deteriorations and several un designable characteristics of which the following were the most prominent; Over centralization, incessant conflict between cadres, little enhances on result and concrete performance, counterproductive separation of authority from responsibility at top most hierarchy, dangerously low staff morale and productivity, in appropriate staff development practices. Indeed at that point in time the civil service was displaying a patient inability to cope effectively with the challenges of a modem, complex and development-hungry society.
  22. 22. 22 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation 33. Small wonder then that the Government in 1988, through the civil service decree No 43 instituted civil service reforms. The reforms where designed to enable the following: enhance professionalism, alignment with the presidential system of government, decentralization and delegation, combination of authority with responsibility enhanced accountability, enhanced checks an balance, general modernization, enhance effectiveness, efficiency and speed of operation. 34. Some of the important provisions of the reform where the following: The office of the Head of Civil service was abolished: The Minister in addition to being the Chief Executive also became the Accountant Officer in place of the Permanent Secretary; the post of Permanent Secretary was also abolished in its place a new political post of Director-General was created. The Director-General then held office at the pleasure of the President and will vacate office with the Government which appointed him unless re-appointed by the in-coming administration. The Civil Service was professionalism in order to stimulate specialization and expertise. In this regard, an officer was expected to make a career in a particular Ministry or department. Each Ministry was restructured along departmental lines to reflect the basic functions and area of concern of the Ministry each departmental was sub divided into divisions, each Division was sub-divided into Branches, were subdivided into sections. 35. Each Ministry was empowered to undertake the appointment, promotion and discipline of its staff under the general and uniform guidelines provided by the Federal Civil Service Commission. 36. Each Ministry or extra Ministerial department was allowed to have three common services departments viz; Department of Personnel Management, Department of Finance and Supplies and Department of Planning Research and Statistics and not more than five operation department. 37. However, It late became clear that the civil servant reforms had some limitations. There was inadequate knowledge about the provision of reforms on the part of some civil servants and top Government Functionaries. There was absence of strong commitment on the part of top Government functionaries to the Implementation of the reforms partly as a result of misconception that full implementation will erode their powers. There was also the problem of human resistance to change and fear of the unknown on the part of many civil servants. 38. Besides there were inadequate funds for the introduction and entrenchment of the provision of the reforms. There wrong deployment of officers to the duties not relevant to academic/professional background. Training and cognate experience. There was lack of a formal program for implementation incorporating deadlines and lack of sanction for infringing the provision of the reforms. 39. It was therefore not surprising that Government decided to set up a civil service review panel popularly known as Ayida review panel which recommended the abrogation of the civil service reorganisation decree No 43 of 1988. It was also recommended a return to what the civil service was before the introduction of the reforms. It should however be noted that some part of the reforms have survived.
  23. 23. 23 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation SECTION 7 NATIONAL COUNCIL ON ESTABLISHMENT 40. The National Council on Establishment (NCE) was set up by the Government of the Federation in 1957 to facilitate inter governmental consultation on establishment matters and to avoid unnecessary disparities in the salary structure and conditions of service in all the civil service. 41. In the Civilian regime, the NCE, was considered as part of the cabinet office becomes the chairman of its ministerial meeting was the Prime Minister. In recent times however the office of establishment and management services has/assumed responsibility for national Council on Establishment and its head is at present the chairman of its ministerial meeting. COMPOSITION OF COUNCIL 42. The council has two tiers: (i) Ministerial meetings are always attended by secretary to the State Government who are advised by their Permanent Secretaries. (ii) The meeting of officials attended by the permanent Secretaries or senior officials in charge of the Ministry/Division of establishment in all the Government.. The Permanent Secretary, Office of Establishment and Management services is the Chairman. 43. FUNCTION OF THE COUNCIL The council performs broadly the following functions; (a) It acts as a consultative body for the Government of the federation in the matters partaing to staff establishment, salary structures, gradings, uniformity in the Nigeria Civil services. Matters on which consultations are held include salaries, gradings, condition of services, schemes of service etc. (b) The council also serves as pool of information on all establishment and service matters for the Government of the Federation. Each Government is thus expected to forward relevant documents, circulars, statistical information etc. Procedure of the Council 44. Meetings of the Council are to beheld twice a year, or as the amount of business may dictate. When any subject is to be brought before the Council for consideration, the initiating Government first addresses a memorandum to the Secretary to the Council setting out the proposals in detail. The Secretary circulates copies of the memorandum to the other Governments before the subject matter is due to come up for consideration at he meeting of officials of the council. The Secretary records the minutes and conclusions of the council on the subject matter. The conclusions reached are then recommended to Member Governments for adoption. Any
  24. 24. 24 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation conclusion touching on policy or of a fundamental character is referred to the Ministerial meetings for further consideration and approval. SECTION 8 NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT PLANS 45. For every nation there is need for a vision of an ideal state towards which society should move. In the march to the preferred state, it is necessary to set targets and reference points against which short term actions and achievements can be evaluated. This is part of what National Development Planning is about Nigeria. Like many developing countries, has long accepted the principles of planned economic development and has since realised from her development experience that planning is a sine-qua-non for rapid socio-economic development. PLANNING EXPERIENCE IN NIGERIA 46. The first comprehensive National Development Plan came after independence and covered the period 1962-68. The second plan was a four year plan aimed at restructuring the facilities damaged as a result of the Civil war. It spanned the period 1970-74. The third plan. 1975-80, was formulated with the objectives of utilizing the resources earned from exports of oil to rapid develop the productive capacity of the economy. The fourth plan, 1981-85, was the first plan to be formulated by a democratically elected government it was the first plan in which the Local Government as a distinct tier of government, which have specific responsibilities under the constitution participated. With the participation Local government. Nigeria started to move away from “planning from above to the middle to planning from below”. 47. All the four development plans had common objectives which may be summed up as follows: (i) Achievements of dynamic self-sustaining growth for the economy: (ii) Improvement in the standard of living: (iii) Enhanced real per capital income: (iv) Reduction in the level of unemployment: (v) Diversification of the economy; (vi) Balanced development: (vii) Indigenisation of economic activities; (viii) More even distribution of incomes: and (ix) The promotion of science and technological development. 48. Rather than have a fifth Development Plan that would have spanned the period, 1986-90, the country adopted the Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP). The objectives of the SAP were to restructure and diversify the productive base of the economy in order to reduce its dependence on the oil sector and imports: reduce the dominance of unproductive investments in the public sector; enhance the potential of the private-sector; achieve fiscal and balance of payment viability; and achieve a realistic exchange rate for the Naira among others” The SAP which was
  25. 25. 25 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation initially designed to cover the period, 1986-88, was later extended to provide the policy basis for the successive three Year Rolling Plans which commenced from 1990 and have been operative to date. 49. The experience with the Fourth National Development Plan, 1981-85 therefore informed the need for a change in the strategy for development planning in Nigeria. This was so because the Fourth Plan which was mainly based on five year projection of resources to be earned from the oil sector was hardily launched in 1981 when the international oil market virtually collapsed with average level of oil production and price falling by half before the end of the plan. Consequently the targets set for the plan were not realised due mainly to the huge resources shortfall which adversely affected the performance of all sectors of tile economy during the reference period. 50. The lessons of the past fixed five year medium term development plans, with wide divergence between objectives and actual achievement, made it imperative to adopt a new planning strategy (Rolling Plan) that is subject to periodic reviews as against the rigid five years fixed plans. Thus, the Rolling plan which is of shorter duration and more efficient in coping with the vagaries of the international oil market and the dynamics of the new world order was introduced in 1990 to replace the five year fixed medium term plan. Since its introduction, eight of such Plans have been put in place by the National Planning Commission. These, are the 1990-92, 1991-93, 1992- 94, 1993-95, 1994-96, 1995-97, 1996-98 and 1997-99 National Rolling Plans. The three year Rolling Plan which is subject to annual modification and review takes account of the rapidly changing resources profile of the economy and the annual Capital Budget which draws its inspiration and programmes from the rolling plan are currently the key instruments through which plans, projects, programmes and policies are being articulated formulated and implemented in Nigeria. The Perspective plan which is expected to map out the long term direction of policies and programme and form the medium term three-year Rolling Plan and the annual budget is still in the making by the National Planning Commission and Vision 2010 Committee. THE PLANNING PROCESS IN NIGERIA 51. The Planning process usually start with the preparation of Macro-economic framework and Guidelines that are expected to form the basis for preparing projects and programmes for an ensuring plan period. The Guidelines usually in clued policy directions, aspirations and priorities based on the perception of society and government. The macro-economic framework involves policy guidelines and macro-economic projects for the reference plan period. To provide background for the anticipated economic activities during the plan, the trends of selected macro- economic aggregate for the previous plan are analysed to assist in identifying the potential areas as well as the constraints and problems of the economy. 52. The “Guidelines” are generally based on policy recommendations and views from all segments of the society and the various government organs on what the objectives strategies and priorities of the medium term development plan should be. It also includes in broad order, the magnitude of resources that are likely to be available for the implementation of programmes and projects
  26. 26. 26 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation during the Plan period. It contains the Macro-economic projects and all analysis of major problems which the plan is supposed to tackle, including the priorities and prospects of the country‟s socio-economic system sector by sector. It also includes policy directions which aim at the alleviation of the identified problems during the ensuing plan period. Furthermore, the Guidelines attempt to articulate as clearly as possible, the nation‟s basic development objectives during the reference period. This ensures that the numerous agencies of government which would be preparing the projects and programmes in the various sectors have a good perception of the nature of the challenges that lie ahead the existing resources limitations and the nature, direction and magnitude of the efforts required. It is equally an instrument for ensuring that the programmes and projects to be submitted by the various agencies are consistent with the overall goals and objectives of the society. 53. After drafting the Guidelines, he document is subjected to rigorous discussions between the National Planning Commission and the executing agencies and thereafter submitted to the statutory planning bodes the Conference of Ministers and Commissioners responsible for economic planning the National Economic Council and the National Planning Commission for further deliberation after which it goes to the Federal Executive Council, the National Council of States and the Provisional Ruling Council or National Assembly (whichever is applicable) for approval. 54. Following the approval of the Guidelines, call Circular letters are forwarded by the National Planning Commission to all Federal Ministries/Agencies, State and Local Governments together with the guidelines inviting them to submit their projects and programmes for the plan. 55. The National Planning Commission holds bilateral discussions with all Federal Ministries/Agencies and State Governments to discuss their projects and programme for the plan. Projects in the plan are tailored to the projected resources that will be available during the Plan period and the proposed policy framework. PLANNING MACHINERY IN NIGERIA 56. At the Federal level the National Planning Commission has responsibility for the preparation of the Perspective Plan and the three year Rolling plan. The Commission also prepares and controls the annual Capital Budget and sets broad guidelines for the Recurrent Budget. 57. However, in the current dispensation the Ministry of Finance in collaboration with the National Planning Commission prepares the Capital Budget. In an ideal situation, the commission should prepare and control the Capital Budget. The Annual Capital Budget therefore is that it leads to inconsistency in resource allocation to capital projects between the Rolling Plan and the Annual Capital Budget. To enhance the effectiveness of planning therefore, Capital Budget should be prepared by the National Planning Commission within the framework of the Rolling Plan. 58. Development planning in Nigeria is characterized by consultations with various Federal Ministries/Agencies, State Governments and Organise private sector and enterprises people are
  27. 27. 27 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation involved at every projects and programmes. Currently, the institutional machinery for development planning in Nigeria is as follows: (i) The Provisional ruling (PRC) (ii) The National Council of States (NCS) (iii) The Federal Executive Council (FEC) (iv) The National Planning Commission (NPC) (v) National Council on Development Planning (NCDP) (vi) The National Economic Advisory Council (NEAC) (vii) The Joint Planning Board (JPB) 59. The implementation of projects and programmes in the plan is the primary responsibility of the agencies through their annual budget. However in this important aspect of the planning process, the National Planning Commission has a critical role in ensuring that the rules and procedures laid down for plan implementation and control are observed. The Commission is therefore charged with the responsibility for project monitoring. The Commission CCOMPLISHES THIS THROUGH REGULAR physical inspection tours of key Federal, State and Local Government projects. 60. The achievement of several countries that have embraced planning to enhance their development such as Japan, India, Korea, etc. Bear testimony to the potential that effective planning has for assisting states to achieve rapid economic and social transformation. Development planning has come a long way in Nigeria and its role in the transformation of the economy has continued to grow with time. As the plan provides a basis of action for the government on the economy, all officials are expected to be familiar in broad outline with the contents of the Development Plans including the rules and procedures for their implementation. All officials are expected to continue in various ways to the effective implementation of Development Plans.
  28. 28. 28 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation CHAPTER 4 CODE OF ETHICS IN GOVERNMENT BUSINESS From the Colonial times up to the period prior to the oil boom, the Civil Service enjoyed high recognition and respect. It also attracted the best talents. However, from the period of oil boom up to the present time, the image has fallen very greatly. There is therefore a need for enhancing the image and the future of the service and dong this the following points should be borne in mind. (i) Discipline 2. The Civil Service must be well disciplined. Rules and regulations should be adhered to and the interests of the service must be paramount. 3. Senior Officers should prescribe codes of conduct which they themselves can and should comply with. Those who wish to lead other people should always remember that effective leadership involves exemplary character, hard work and transparent integrity conduct is one of the criteria for promotion. 4. Junior Officers should be familiar with Government Regulations and Rules regarding good conduct. They must learn to obey lawful orders and established authority. (ii) (a) Loyalty 5. Civil servant should be loyal to the Government which has given them the opportunity to sserve it. No Officer or employee should assume that he has the right to a salary or wage without giving adequate service in return. Government has no obligation to retain inefficient or disloyal elements in the service. (b) Honest 6. Civil Servants should be honest in doing their duties and in their dealings with the public. They should realise that they are paid salaries for the duties which they perform. This means that they should be conscientious on duty and demand or receive nothing in money or kind from anyone in the performance of their duties. (c) Courage 7. Courage is one greatest assets to the best Civil Servants. The exhibition of this quality takes many forms. It may be shown in working hard in every busy post for there is really no reason to fear hard work. Civil servants should acquire the courage of working hard. They should not hesitate to take over an extensive schedule of duties. 8. Another type of courage involves doing what is morally right even though one does not stand to gain personally from such action. In your schedule of duties you should do the right thing, especially if it will enhance the reputation of the service and the country. You should, at all times
  29. 29. 29 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation resist temptations from whatever quarters. Where the prior consent of a superior authority is necessary be courteous in getting it. (d) Courtesy 9. It costs nothing to be polite to your colleagues and the general public served by you. Polite instructions are usually more easily obeyed. Members of public always cherish courtesy and consideration from Civil Servants. Courtesy in the Office and to the general public makes it easier to get on with other people. A heavy schedule of duties or any other circumstance can not justify bad tempter by civil servants. (e) Co-operation 10. The eleven members of a good football team co-operated whenever they are on the field for a match. One or two members who believe they are as good a the rest of the team may cause the defeat of the whole team. Similarly all the staff in the section of a Ministry should co-operate as a team in order to realise the overall purpose of the section. The Officers and staff of a Ministry should work together to attain the goals of the Ministry. (f) Tact 11. “Tact” means skilfulness in handling a difficult situation without giving offence to the people involved. That is very necessary in the service. Skill in dealing with people by creating an impression of willingness to be of assistance enhance the efficiency of the office and gives the public satisfaction. (g) Industry 12. In this sense, industry means useful hard work: This definition is necessary because some workers work furiously to get little or nothing done. They only waste their energy and often give false impression to their supervisors. 13. You have been engaged to serve your Ministry or Department in some way. In turn your Ministry or Department serves the Government and members of the public. Try to ensure that you work to earn your pay and promotions. To work hard with good results the following principles are useful: 1. Know the scope of your work 2. Know the various parts of your schedule of duties 3. Decide the order or sequence you should deal with the various states of your work: 4. Before you start, have rough idea of when you should finish it: 5. If your work involves writing ensure that your style is clear and direct. (h) Avoidance of Delay
  30. 30. 30 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation 14. If you are hard working, you are unlikely to delay action on files or projects.. However some schedules of duties are extremely busy. There are either so many people to interview and / or so many files to deal with. 15. Your time should be devoted to official work. If you are in, you may be unable to concentrate on your work, in such a case, you should consult a Doctor and then return to work later unless, where you are put on sick list. 16. If you are going to be away for a day or two, you should let your boss know as soon as possible. Any urgent work in your schedule may then be taken over by some other officers. You could avoid delay in the following ways: (i) Know precisely when you have to submit any piece of work to your supervisor or higher authority. (ii) Do not hoard files in the hope that you can dispose of them at the eleventh hour. (iii) Avoid being bogged down by a difficult matter at the expense of many simpler ones. In this connection, there is a psychological advantage in disposing of several simple cases before taking on tougher ones. (iv) Come early to your work place and devote your time to work until the closing time. (v) Do not malinger in your work-place (vi) It pays to do some overtime occasionally in order to bring your work up to date. 17. Civil Servant should keep their offices tidy not only because visiting members of the public served by them are thereby more favourably impressed but also because an of orderly office often gives an idea of the state of minds of its staff. 18. It usually enhances efficiency if files and equipment are placed so that they are easily located when necessary. In this connection, you may perhaps recall your own impression you went to an office who could not help you in getting some reference because his office was untidy and disorderly. 19. Workers should also ensure that they are properly dressed to do their duty in the office or work place. it is a good idea to dress in a business-like manner not as if one were going to a formal party or a beauty queen parade. It does not cost much to dress simply with carefully chosen materials. It is useful to remember that how people dress tells keen observers a great deal of the general character and test of such people. (i) Helpfulness 20. You may have heard many people allege that it is now difficult for people to get help from those they do know. That there is something in this allegation is borne out by the fact that many young people now seem to believe that they can only get jobs from the public offices if they channel their applications through their personal friend‟s relatives or townsmen. This unfortunate tendency should be discouraged by all civil servants. 21. There are many opportunities of helping your colleagues and your juniors in the office at no personal cost at all. You could advise a young messenger to do further studies instead of allowing him to waste his official time and his money on football pools. Similarly, Supervisors should find time to listen to their subordinates who have personal or domestic problems. Those
  31. 31. 31 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation who complain that some of their requests have been turned down should be told why it is impossible to meet their wishes. 22. Should papers or documents come to you by mistake from members of staff or the general public, find out the correct destination and take necessary directive as to rerouting it from your superior officer. (j) Kindness 23. Being kind does not imply that you should give to people what they are unentitled to. Kindness involves respecting the privileges and rights of officers, employees and members of the public irrespective of the fact that those concerned are unknown to you. A Civil Servant is a public servant. He should, therefore, serve impartially. 24. Kindness also involves having a humane approach in dealing with people in difficulty. This applies to staff as well as members of the public. A staff in difficulty needs help and, if you are in a position to do so, you should assist him to the best of your ability without of course, the breach of the regulations or disturbing the course of justice. The same consideration should be shown to the public. (iii) Attitude to Public Funds 25. In Chapter 2, of this Handbook, you read about how government gets and spends public funds. There was reference to cost-consciousness in the same chapter. The principles already touched upon should always influence the conduct of Civil Servants. The following points are strongly emphasized: (a) Do not waste funds. If you are frugal in spending your money you should be equally frugal in spending public funds. (b) Collectors of Government Revenue should be conscientious in doing their duty they should not make any rebates as a favour to anyone. In this regard it is not kindness to reduce the Revenue due to Government on your own account or at your own level. (c) Justify every expenditure and ensure that economy is insisted upon, e.g. discourage wasting public funds on ill-advised purchases near the end of the financial year. (d) As a good citizen and a good civil servant, discourage financial abuses by making suitable reports through the correct channel. (e) Made-in-Nigeria goods should be preferred to their imported counterparts. Patronage of local goods encourages the growth of local industries.
  32. 32. 32 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (iv) National Consciousness 26. The ideals held by people influence their actions. Therefore, Civil Servants should aim at inspiring, broad-minded ideals. Without being unrealistic. One Nigeria is by far and always superior to any town or clan or ethnic group in the Federation. Therefore, the interest of group should not be pursued at the expense of what is best for Nigeria. Attempt by some people or ethnic group to turn over public officers and resources to themselves or members of their group always tend to weaken and change the bonds of national unity. Sometimes, Civil unrest may arise from indifference to or disguised encouragement of nepotism, favoritism and their associated vices. (v) A Good Image of the Service 27. The Government of the Federation are the largest employers of labour. The Civil Services therefore have a leading role to play in the social and economic affairs of the Country. 28. Nigerian Civil Servants have proved their mettle in successfully grappling with the problems arising from the rapid, social and economic development of the Country. A deterioration of standards should not be tolerated. In achieving this goal on which a Good image of the Civil Service depends. Nigerians particularly those at the top should continue to provide honest and courageous leadership. (vi) Efficiency 29. The level of efficiency can be improved upon. Training-consciousness will help in this regard. No grade or group of officers should consider itself so good as to dispense with further training. As-a matter of policy, advantage should be taken of induction Refresher and training courses. 30. In the national interest, training institutions in the Federal Service should be open to Civil Servant in the States. As a matter of policy staff may attend training courses in the State. It would be extremely rewarding if the training of some Federal and State personnel could be held jointly to promote a community of experience for such trainees. 31. The younger elements in the services are very important. Their most promising members will later be among the top Civil Servants, it is therefore suggested that the minds of the future leaders in our services should be exposed to good education and discipline. 32. The services should not only be disciplined: they should also be efficient (vii) Social Problems and Social Justice 33. As was stated in chapter 3, Civil Servants have responsibility for helping to formulate and for implementing Government Polices. These policies concern the maintenance of law and order, promoting a healthy and well-educated nationhood, efficient systems of transport, reliable means of communication. Opportunities for trade and industry efficient development of national resources. etc.
  33. 33. 33 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation 34. The amenities provided by Governments should be equitably distributed among the people without reference to political parties, ethnic and religious groups. 35. As Civil .Servants are paid from various taxes collected from the people, Government servants should help to ensure that: 1.Equal opportunity for employment is provided for all job seekers. 2.Under no circumstances should bribes and gifts .be taken from applicants for jobs. Interviews for employment should always be conducted by a duly constituted panel. It should never be left in the hands of a single person Proper record should be kept of the interview for future reference. 3.Nepotism or any other form of preferential treatment should be avoided. 4.In the services themselves, privileges should be granted only to those who are qualified for them. 5.Civil Servants should never dispense private or personal favours with public funds and property. 6.Justice and fair play should be extended to all concerned. 7.Ensure that public business is always discharged in accordance with existing laws, rules and regulations of Government and with expenditure. 8.Discourage discriminatory practices to individuals and groups. 9.All irregularities reported should be investigated and corrective action promptly taken. (viii) The Use of Authority 36. Authority may be defined as the power given to a body or person or office holder by a superior to ensure, that some definite objective is achieved. As the extent of the power given is usually stated, Authority” as a rule, is never limited. Furthermore its duration is often defined. 37. Authority may be derived from the following sources: (a) The Constitution of a Country or a State. (b) National Assembly or the Legislature. (c) Government Pronouncements and Publications. (d) The Public Service Rules (e) Financial Regulations (f) Public Service Rules and Regulations published from time to time. (g) Government Notices in Gazette. (h) Circular and circular letters from Ministries and Departments. (i) Official Notices and Instructions in Ministries or Divisions within Ministries/Departments.
  34. 34. 34 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation AUTHORITY IN MINISTRIES AND DEPARTMENT 38. A head of Ministry or Extra-Ministerial Department has authority for the following functions among others: (i) Organisation of Ministry/Department in such way that its objectives could be as efficiently as possible. (ii) Control of Votes in Annual Estimates (iii) Maintenance of discipline of Staff. (iv) Training and deployment of staff in a .manner that they become more efficient, effective and productive. (v) Welfare of Staff. AUTHORITY IN SMALLER UNITS 39. In Department, Division, Branch or Section of a Ministry or Extra Ministerial Department, the head has power to: a. Ensure that the work allocated to the Sub-division is done efficiently and promptly. b. Supervise his staff. c. Maintain discipline and d. Look after the welfare of his staff. EXERCISING AUTHORITY 40. It is important for those who wield authority to remember always that power enjoyed by them is to enable them achieve the goals of their organizations. In several matters in civil services, authority has to be exercised for the general welfare of the public and not for the private or personal gains of department or divisional heads. Authority should not be exercised in a manner to advance the interest of a family, clique or ethnic group. Officers in authority should ensure that all those under them are given the same opportunities. Preferential treatment for any officer or class amounts to favoritism. A head or supervisor who is guilty of favoritism often makes it impossible for all his subordinates to do their best. Every head should make it clear to his staff that merit and loyalty, not family, religion or place of origin are decisive Factors for achievement. FLEXIBILITY AND DECISION MAKING 41. Much of the work of the schedule officers involves taking decisions or supplying information to aid decision making. In doing this, Civil Servants should ensure that as much as possible, they follow, the under listed steps as means of enhancing objectivity and good judgment. i. thorough mastery of the problems. ii. knowing the facts about the problems under consideration; iii. Analysis of the fact collected
  35. 35. 35 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation iv. Examining whether available precedents fit into the problems under consideration. v. Determining the conclusions in the light of the facts and other considerations. vi. Giving an idea of probable effect of the conclusions if implemented CHAPTER 5
  36. 36. 36 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation GENERAL SOURCES OF INFORMATION An important asset to most schedule officers is accurate information based on fact and figures. Obsolete and incorrect information do not help officers to make sound decisions. Besides, such factors as maturity and sound judgment are easily undermined by misinformation. 2. Schedule officer should do all‟ they can to be well informed so that their efficiency could be enhanced. Early in their careers, they should familiarize. Themselves with the sources of information in the Services. Some sources are as follows: 1. Public Service Rules. 2. Financial Regulations: 3. Circulars and Circular Letters of Ministries and Departments. 4. Treasury Circulars. 5. Official Gazettes of the Federal and State Governments of Nigeria 6. The Revenue, Expenditure and Capita! Estimates of the Federal and States Governments of Nigeria. 7. Laws of the Federation of Nigeria. 8. Laws of the various Nigerian States. 9. Notes for Guidance No. 1 (Pension and Gratuities). 10. Notes for Guidance NO.2 (Dismissal and Termination of Appointment). 11. Notes for Guidance No.3 (Federal Civil Service Commission) 12. Notes for Guidance NO.4 {Civil Service Commission Organisation). 13. Notes for Guidance No. 5 (Review Procedure for Appointments. Acting Appointments, Promotion and Discipline). 14. Policy Circulars of the Federal Civil Service Commission. 15. Public Service Manuals. 16. Reports of Commissions of Enquires. 17. Government White Papers. 18. Sessional Papers. 19. Staff Lists of Federal and States Governments. 20. Establishments and Staff Handbooks. 21. Guide to Careers. 22. Decrees. 23. Edicts. 24. Publications of National and International Management Development Institutes. 25. Publications by Management Service Department of the Office of Establishments and Management Services. 26. Publications of the Federal Office of Statistics. 27. Annual Reports of Ministries/Departments. 28. Annual Abstracts of Statistics. 29. Survey Reports of Ministries and Agencies of Government 30. Nigeria Trade Summary
  37. 37. 37 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation 31. Central Bank of Nigeria Reviews/Reports. 32. The Nigerian Year Book. 33. Telephone Directories 34. News Letters. 35. The above list is not exhaustive. The Reader may include other sources discovered by him.
  38. 38. 38 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation CHAPTER 6 OFFICIAL ABBREVIATIONS Abbreviation commonly used in official correspondence, but rarely in communication with the general public (except in telegrams or cables), including the following: a.b.c ” ” ” ” at back cover a/c ” ” ” ” account ag ” ” ” ” Acting A.I.E ” ” ” ” Authority to Incur Expenditure a.y.c. ” ” ” ” at your convenience b.c ” ” ” ” back cover B/F ” ” ” ” Brought forward b.o.f ” ” ” ” back of file B.U. ” ” ” ” Bring up: Brought up B.U.F. ” ” ” ” Bring up file C.C. ” ” ” ” Carbon copy C/F ” ” ” ” Carried forward Cap ” ” ” ” Chapter (usually of the Laws) C/o ” ” ” ” Care of P.S.R ” ” ” ” Public Service Rules C/F ” ” ” ” Carried forward Conf ” ” ” ” Confidential Cons ” ” ” ” Consideration Cont‟d ” ” ” ” Continued D. ” ” ” ” Director D.A.V. ” ” ” ” Department Adjustment Voucher d/d ” ” ” ” Dated D.D ” ” ” ” Deputy Director D.G ” ” ” ” Director General Dept. ” ” ” ” Department D/o ” ” ” ” Demi official (letter) D.V.E.A Book ” ” ” Department Vote Expenditure Account Book e.g. ” ” ” ” for example Enc. ” ” ” ” Enclosure E.T.A ” ” ” ” Estimated Time of Arrival e.t.c. ” ” ” ” and so on E.T.D. ” ” ” ” Estimated Time of Departure F.&P.A ” ” ” ” File and put away f.f.a. ” ” ” ” for further action f.i.o ” ” ” ” for information only f.n.a ” ” ” ” for necessary action
  39. 39. 39 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation F.R ” ” ” ” Financial Regulations f.y.c. ” ” ” ” for your consideration f.y.i ” ” ” ” for your information H.E ” ” ” ” His Excellency H.O.D ” ” ” ” Head of Department H.O.C.S.F. ” ” ” ” Head of the Civil Service of the Federation Hon. ” ” ” ” Honourable Hqrts. ” ” ” ” Headquarters h/y ” ” ” ” herewith i/c ” ” ” ” in charge of i.d.c. ” ” ” ” in due course i.e ” ” ” ” (ID/EST) that is, in other words i.f.o ” ” ” ” in favour of k.i.v ” ” ” ” keep in view L.G. ” ” ” ” Local Government L.P.C ” ” ” ” Last pay certificate L.P.O ” ” ” ” Local purchase order Misc. ” ” ” ” Miscellaneous n.a ” ” ” ” not applicable (or necessary action) n.a.t. ” ” ” ” necessary action taken N.B ” ” ” ” Nota Bene (Take notice) n.f.a ” ” ” ” no further action O/C ” ” ” ” Officer-in-charge O.K. ” ” ” ” all correct P.A. ” ” ” ” Put away/Personal Assistant Para ” ” ” ” Paragraph Perm. Sec ” ” ” Permanent Secretary P.S ” ” ” ” Postscript: i.e. written afterwards Pp (or pp) ” ” ” ” pages, paper P.T.O ” ” ” ” please turn over P.U ” ” ” ” put up (papers of suggestions to an Official) P.V. ” ” ” ” Payment Voucher q.e.d ” ” ” ” which was to demonstrated recd. ” ” ” ” received Re. ” ” ” ” Reference R.S.V.P” ” ” ” respondez silvous plaint (Reply if you Please) R.V. ” ” ” ” Receipt Vouchers Sec. ” ” ” ” Secretary (or Section) s.f.c. ” ” ” ” Submitted for consideration s.f.i ” ” ” ” Submitted for information s.f.s ” ” ” ” submitted for signature S.G.F ” ” ” ” Secretary to the Government of Federation
  40. 40. 40 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation S.I.V. ” ” ” ” Stores Issue Voucher S.R.V ” ” ” ” Stores Receipt Voucher “T” ” ” ” ” Temporary T/y or T.y ” ” ” ” Thank you u.f.s. ” ” ” ” under flying seal (to pass through a high authority) w.r.t. ” ” ” ” with reference to your let ” ” ” ” your letter your tel ” ” ” ” your telegram (or cable gram) 2. Expressions which are frequently used in Government business are listed below. They must be used in all formal minutes and correspondence but must be underlined. Non – English words or phrases used in official correspondence should always be underlined. e.g; Ad infintum ” ” ” ” without end Ad volerem ” ” ” ” according to value Et. Cq ” ” ” ” and the following (and what follows) Inter alia ” ” ” ” the same In toto ” ” ” ” among other things Ipso facto ” ” ” ” by that very fact Pari passu ” ” ” ” on an equal footing Per se ” ” ” ” by itself, considered apart Pro rata ” ” ” ” at the first glance Sine die ” ” ” ” Proportionately State quo ” ” ” ” existing state of affairs Utral vires ” ” ” ” beyond their powers Vide ” ” ” ” see Viz ” ” ” ” namely to wit. 3. When used in this Handbook, the, words in the first column have the meanings show in the second column. Minute/Memo ” ” ” Written submission to present a view or position on an issue Brief ”” ” ” Written submission on an extant position on a subject matter Filling Cabinet ” Racks, shelves or other repositories for files Flimsies ” ” Carbon copies of out-going letters and written submission. Ministries ” ” Includes Extra-Ministerial Departments.
  41. 41. 41 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation CHAPTER 7 BASIC TECHNIQUES OF CLEAR WRITING AND FORMS OF OFFICIAL COMMUNICATION As there is an infinite variety of subjects ranging from the administration of the Ministry‟s own staff to matters requiring specialized or technical knowledge, it is important to cover all aspects of the work done by Schedule officers, but since the bulk of it is the production of minutes and correspondence for which, the basic principles and procedures are standardized this chapter is confined to setting out guidelines for the preparation and treatment of such papers. 2. Much of the time of most officers is devoted to drafting and minuting; it is, therefore of cardinal importance that they should be familiar with the basic techniques for clear writing. „Clear writing‟, in this context means not only legibility but also clarity of style, WHAT IS STYLE? 3. Style may be‟ defined as the distinctive manner of writing. Schedule Officers should have good a style. Without it, they will be severely handicapped in projecting their views in a manner to be clearly „understood and to carry due weight. BASIC TECHNIQUES FOR CLEAR WRITING 4. (i) Think clearly: Normally, if your thinking is clear, clarity of language cannot be in doubt No useful purpose can be served by looking for an impressive opening when the points at issue in a problem have not been grasped It s a good idea to think first and write afterwards (ii) Assemble facts: While thinking about a problem, jot down the main points and go over them later, putting down suitable references, if any. (iii) Arrange points in logical sequence: After thinking about the subject and checking your sources, put the main points in logical (iv) sequences. Get your references handy. (v) Committing views to paper: If you have to write up your minute or draft for a copy typist, then write boldly and legibly. If you are in doubt about any passage, get it explained to the typist, it is essential to speak debatably, clearly and coherently to a Stenographer, while dictating. Before directing the final draft of your script, correct any grammatical mistakes or any words mis-spelt.
  42. 42. 42 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation 5. The principles covered above apply to drafting, minuting, letter- writing and other forms of official communication. DRAFTING 6. A draft is a proposed reply, circular or other document, put up by an officer to a higher authority. If the proposed reply or suggested circulars serves the prescribed purpose, it is considered good and approved. A draft may be amended by filling in the gaps in the efforts of the officer or by the incorporation of additional facts by the senior officer. 7. A bad draft (e.g. one which does not show an appreciation of the point at issue or one hastily put up without taking pains) may be rejected and scrapped. WHEN TO DRAFT 8. Where an item of correspondence is of a routine nature and calls for a routine reply, a letter ready for signature should be put up to the senior officer for signature Sometimes, the writer of a minute has to submit a draft reply embodying a recommendation in his minute Draft replies suggested for consideration may reduce substantially the length of a minute. 9. When a draft has been approved it is sent to a typist to be produced in the correct form for issue. The act of typing the letter in this form is known as fairing and the finished document is known as a faired draft. 10. Features of a good draft are as follows: (a) Clarity of thought and expression. - Say exactly what you wish to say in simple and direct language. Avoid repetitions. (b) Accuracy.- Verify all facts and figures before writing. (c) Grammar.- Weak or indifferent grammar mars the quality of a draft. Special care is necessary in the use of punctuation marks. Avoid over-worked expressions and stilted phraseology. (d) Courtesy-All communications from public servants to persons inside or outside the public service must be polite. Even the reply to a discourteous writer should be couched in courteous terms. 11. Typed drafts of minutes, briefs, letters, etc. should, have headings which give an idea of the matter in the drafts. Reasonable spacing is used in typed drafts so that there is ample space for amendments. Draft should be typed only on reverse of used sheets, clean sheets with discarded type-scripts at the front may be used for typing drafts, 12. Discarded papers containing classified information should never be used for drafting.
  43. 43. 43 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation 13. When drafts of any documents are given to typist for fairing, the number of copies required should always be clearly recorded at the top of page 1 of every draft. Such information can, for example take the form of either “6 copies” meaning 6 in all or “1+ 5” copies” meaning one original and five copies. It is desirable for Schedule Officers and their typists to agree on the working to be used in describing the number of copies that should be made in addition to the original so as to save time and avoid waste of stationery. MINUTING 14. A minute may be defined as a communication in writing, usually in files between two or more officials. This definition does not apply to a letter from one officer to another. Minutes are normally used to consider and settle matters or to direct what action may be taken in a given circumstance. Minuting is the act of writing a minute. When not to Minute 15. It may not be necessary to minute on a matter when: (a) The matter can be cleared by discussion either at a meeting (usually informal) or by telephone. The latter medium should not be used for confidential or secret matters. (b) The action necessary is routine. (c) A more officer has specifically suggested that the matter at issue should be referred to him for further action usually because he is familiar with the background of the subject and/or he wishes to put down some drafting instructions. (d) The matter is straightforward and no further information or guidance can usefully be added. (e) The subject matter assumed technical or professional or special knowledge which the Schedule Officer is not familiar with. . In such a case, the matter should be referred as early as Possible to a suitable professional or expert for necessary action. Forms and Content of a Minute 16. The top left-hand side of a minute refers to the person by appointment to whom it is written. The text of the minute follows. It is concluded by the signature or initials of the writer, immediately under his signature or initials are the typewritten or stamped name of the Officer writing it. Under his name the post held is shown and the date of his minute. 17. A minute may be built up as follows: (a) State-briefly the matter at issue;
  44. 44. 44 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (b) State the present position and facts affecting it, supporting the statement by reference to previous papers; (c) Verify whether or not the report, proposal or request accords with any Laws. Public Service Rules (PSR) ,Financial Regulations Circulars or Memoranda which have been circulated. Sometimes, it is helpful to quote the actual words of the Public Service Rules, etc. or to attach a copy of the relevant document (d) Indicate previous decisions which may be relevant to the point at issue: (e) Point out any facts or argument which may influence the action to be taken (or decision to be given) as they occur to you when examining papers, precedents and previous decisions. Cite relevant authorities; (f) Finally, suggest what action you propose should be taken. The substance of a memorandum or letter in reply may be suggested in your minute which should be so drafted that the wording may be incorporated direct into the reply to issue. Faults to Guard against in Drafting and Minuting 18. (i) Avoid slipshod thinking-If one‟s thinking is obscure, one‟s drafts and minutes may not be clear., (ii) Bad handwriting.- Provided you can write legibly, it is advisable to type short drafts or minutes. Unless one‟s hand writing is easily readable, all minutes or drafts covering more than half a foolscap sheet should be typewritten. (iii) Irrelevance - Try to have a grasp of the subject at issue and do not drift away from the question being considered. (iv) Haste- It is considered bad to defer action on problems requiring considerable effort in drafting and minuting. A large accumulation of work on files tends to encourage the production of hasty drafts or minutes based on haphazard re- search. (v) Inaccurate Information- Make sure you know intimately the provisions in Government circulars and regulations. Make a special note of alterations in Laws, Public Service Rules and other approved authorities. A conclusion based on obsolete precedent is likely to be misleading. (vi) Indecision- If a draft or a minute must solve or advance the solution to a problem, it should not show indecision. Your summing upon conclusion should therefore, indicate your stand. (vii) Stylistic defects- Avoid repetitions (e.g. return back, can be able) unnecessary airs and graces. 19. The margins for minutes should be at least 1.5” wide and when references are made to other pages in the file (or in other files) the location of those pages should be indicated by means of marginal
  45. 45. 45 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation references. The other files (if any) referred to should be attached and their reference numbers stated. 20. If a minute contains references to matters already dealt with or to papers within the file, the pages so referred to should be flagged with slips of paper clearly showing their numbers. When minutes are copied to-other files, the copies should be clearly marked at the top with the reference and page number of the file containing the original minute. 21. Short titles and abbreviation may be used when addressing minutes, e.g. Penn. Sec. Or D. G. Minutes should be as brief as is consistent with clarity and, in general, should be confined to statements of fact and matters strictly relevant thereto. 22. When a minute is routed through more senior officers, they should not alter it (other than amending spelling or grammatical error) but should write additional paragraphs in which they can each express their views on the statements made by their subordinates. Every such additional statement is signed by its contributor, if an intermediate officer entirely agrees with the statements made by his subordinates, he call indicate this by merely initialling and dating against his designation in the address of the minute He needs not append a paragraph merely for that purpose but if he particularly wishes to emphasize his support, he can do so even if that paragraph, contains nothing more than the word “Supported”. Minutes are usually routed back through the same channels as they were routed outwards. 23. When a minute is addressed to a superior officer and there is insufficient space for his reply a blank unnumbered sheet should always be enclosed in the file before it is submitted. It is customary to sign a minute to superiors and subordinates alike in full especially if the signature of the officer writing the minute is not immediately above the typed or hand-printed initials and surname. Where these have been typed or stamped on the left-hand side of the page at the end of the minute, together with his designation and date (including year), initiating alone is permissible. 24. Minutes should not normally be sent to other Ministries as this entails sending a whole file, so enquiries are usually made by letter, but when sighting of other papers in the file is likely to be required, it is sometimes easier to put a minute in the file and send it over to the appropriate Ministry. Such minutes must always be addressed to the Permanent Secretary, but when the matter is clearly going to be dealt with by a Schedule Officer there the wording “for the Attention of (Designation of officer)... should be included. When minuting files to other Ministries for normal action to be taken, it is quite in order for the Schedule Officer to sign the minute and send out the file regardless of the rank of the Schedule Officer whose attention is required, but when a minute is being sent for the personal attention of the Permanent Secretary of the other Ministry, the minute should not be signed and sent directly to him. It should either be sent through the Schedule Officer‟s own Permanent Secretary for onward transmission, or should be prepared for his signature and transmission. - 25. In cases where it is necessary to minute a file to another Ministry, it is the responsibility of the Schedule Officer to ensure that the file contains no papers which should-not be seen by outsiders. Accordingly, should the file contain such papers, the following procedure should be carried out:
  46. 46. 46 Career Management Office Office of Head of Civil Service Of The Federation (i) all papers relevant to the subject matter should be extracted from the file and placed in a “T” file bearing the same number: (ii) file notes should be inserted in the main file in place of the pages extracted stating clearly the action that has been taken, the designation of the officer who took the action and the date; (iii) the minute is then placed in a “T” file which is sent to the other Ministry: and (iv) a note is made on the last page of the main file describing the action which has been taken and ending with a B.4. so that the matter can be followed upon a specified date. LETTERS 26. Letters to other Ministries are always addressed to the Honorable Minister even though most of them will be dealt with by lower officials. It must be borne in mind that some of those officials may be of a higher rank than the signatory of the letter being sent out. In consequence, whenever information of a censorious nature, or which, is likely to cause displeasure to the recipient, has to be sent out, the Schedule Officer should first consider whether the official dealing with the „matter in the other Ministry is of a higher rank and, if so, whether the difference is such as to warrant that the letter be signed by an officer of higher status than himself. Accordingly, even when a Schedule Officer is directed to issue, a letter, it does not necessarily mean that he should also sign .and send out the letter. It is left to his discretion as to whether be should do so or whether he should merely prepare the letter on behalf of a more senior officer to whom it should be sent for signature. If he is in any doubt, be should first seek advice from his immediate superior officer. 27. It is frequently necessary to follow up letters which have not been answered and a large percentage of files marked B. U return for action on this account. When following up a brief letter reminding an addresses earlier letter (stating its reference and date of issue) maybe issued. Subsequent- reminders may be progressively stronger, but courteous as well. If the establishments concerned are near, the Schedule-Officer may make personal contact. In cases where all .such efforts .have failed to produce an answer, the Schedule Officer should report matter to his superior officer who should be. requested to raise the issue at a higher level, as this frequently produces immediate results. 28. When a Schedule Officer has to write a long and complicated letter which entails considerable research into previous paper said the letter contains references to them, it is very helpful to have the reference at those pages on record. It is a very good practice for such references to be included marginally on the file carbon copy of the letter. If this is done when the original letter is being written, unnecessary research work could be avoided later on. 29. Enquiries from the general public are frequently addressed to the wrong Ministry. It is not-helpful merely to return them to enquire. The correct action is to write short letter to them stating that their queries have been passed on to the Ministries concerned for necessary action. An extra copy of

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    Dec. 23, 2019

Career Management Handbook for Nigerian Civil Service


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