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EU Commits N4.6b To Support FG’s Civil Service Reforms

The reform process of the Nigeria public service received a boost with the European Union committing 20 million Euros (N4.46 Billion) towards the coordination of the programme reform process, policy development and civil service administration reform in Nigeria

The Supervising Minister of National Planning Ambassador Bashir Yuguda made this known, yesterday during the signing ceremony of the memorandum of understanding (mou) and inauguration of the project steering committee for the EU Support to Federal Governance Reform Programme (SUFEGOR) in Nigeria,

According to a statement issued by his Technical Adviser on media, Ikechukwu Eze, the Minister identified the beneficiary agencies as the Office of Head of Service of the
Federation, the Bureau of Public Service Reform, National Planning Commission, National Bureau of Statistics and the Federal Inland Revenue service.

Amb Yuguda, also noted that efforts would be made to ensure that the project is implemented as planned and “achieves the desired objectives and results which will go a long way to assist Nigeria in achieving its developmental goals articulated in the Nigeria’s Vision 20: 2020 and the Transformation Agenda of Mr. President”

The Planning Minister also recalled that the Federal Government of Nigeria, commenced the implementation of the National Strategy for Public Service Reform (NSPSR) in 2008, after recognising that, the weakness of the public service has negatively impacted on its ability to deliver social services and achieve the objectives of its long-term policy framework, “Vision 20-2020”

He explained that, the government’s 2010 Performance Monitoring and Evaluation Report notes that, the marginal gains recorded by the Public Service Reforms are not sufficient to carry the service to the next level, taking a cue from the first National Implementation Programme of the NV 20-2020, despite the notable successes recorded in the implementation of this strategy in the past three years

Accordingly, Yuguda, listed other factors which make policy planning and forecasting less reliable and effective; such as weak technical competences of key specialised agencies responsible for statistical development and policy
planning, namely the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and the National Planning Commission (NPC)

He further mentioned that “the existing Medium-Term Sector Strategy (MTSS) is still weak, in spite of government’s efforts at improving the strategy in the past two years; also annual budgets are neither prepared on the basis of this strategy nor linked to government’s Medium Term Economic Framework (MTEF), and this makes it difficult to monitor policy and budget performance in line with its policy framework and priorities.

The Minister, therefore stated that, it was on the basis of the aforementioned challenges, the EU under the 10th EDF Nigeria-EU Country Strategy Paper and National Indicative Programme (CSP/NIP) is providing Support to the Federal Governance Reform Programme (SUFEGOR)
to support the implementation of the second phase of the NSPSR planned for 2012-2016.

Specifically, he added that, SUFEGOR will support the aspects of the core challenges that concern coordination of the reform process, policy development and civil service administration reform, particularly in promoting government effectiveness, control of corruption and service

“SUFEGOR project will be
implemented through a Technical Assistant Contract and the contractor will be providing technical assistance to the five beneficiary agencies for the management and implementation of the project including policy advisory services, transfer of knowledge and skills, building technical capacities of personnel in the beneficiary agencies through mentoring, coaching and training”, he said

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