Politics, Seat of Power

Lagos to explore ways of getting younger public servants to leadership of service-Fashola

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…as governor presides at swearing in of 3 new permanent secretaries

Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) on Monday presided at the swearing in of three newly appointed Permanent Secretaries in the State Public Service, informing that the State examining ways of making the rules more flexible to allow more talented young people to rise to leadership positions.

The Governor, who spoke at the Executive Council Chambers of the Lagos House, Ikeja at the swearing in of Mr Whenu Sewedo Oluseyi, Dr Omodele Osunkiyesi and Mr Ajibola Ariyibi as Permanent Secretaries noted that he does not see any reason why the leadership positions in the public service has to take up to 30 years to attain.

According to him, ultimately this would help in keeping them longer in service at leadership level where their talents are nurtured by experience because sometimes some Permanent Secretaries just serve about six months and one year and they are gone.

He explained that he is bothered about how to get younger people into such leadership positions because if people can become Judges, Senior Advocates and Managing Director of banks after 15 years of hardwork, then it should be possible to attain the leadership of the public service at a younger age.

“We would like to see Heads of Service serving for up to 10 years and really having time to drive reforms, so those are some of the things we have to get into place within the next few months in cooperation with the public service”, he said.

While congratulating the new appointees, the Governor reminded them of the two oaths that they have taken before man before God to be fair and to be just to all manner of people who would come before them seeking to be served.

“The pressure is a lot and can only increase because the population is increasing and citizens are becoming more aware of their rights and they are agitating for them and of course the information technology has made it easier to put a lot of pressure on public servants”, he said.

The Governor expressed optimism that the new appointees would measure up to expectations. “I hope by the time all of these is finally done we would also be able to say that in making these appointments we did not misplace trust. Let me say to family members that the hours would be long and from our side we would make sure of that because there is enough work and you would assist from the home front”, he said.

He appreciated the sacrifice that the families of the new Permanent Secretaries have made so far in helping and supporting the careers of the appointees thus far adding that they would however need to do more to sacrifice in the overriding belief that the service they are rendering is for the larger society.

While wishing them the very best of luck, the Governor expressed the hope that they will justify the confidence that informed the appointments while placing it on record that the appointments were made on the basis of the merits and performances of the nominees in the examination that has been conducted for persons seeking to hold the office of Permanent Secretaries in the public service of Lagos State.

“We have seen that since we started this examination, promotions and appointments have been merit based, we have created a sense of heightened competition among personnel at that level and the playing field has been leveled and you don’t need to lobby or know somebody to become a Permanent Secretary. The only person to lobby is your own work, the more value you add, the more resourceful you are, the easier it is to reach the top of your career”, he said.

Speaking earlier while presenting the new appointees, the Head of Service, Mrs Oluseyi Josephine Williams reaffirmed the commitment of the Governor to the sustenance of the ideals of merit in appointing Permanent Secretaries from the pool of eminently qualified candidates who have been subjected to full –scale screening.

She added that the Governor has reiterated his confidence in the Committee assigned the onerous responsibility and has shored up the hope of civil servants on the possibility of attaining appointive posts strictly by virtue of hardwork, exemplary performance and merit among several other core values of the service.

Later, in his vote of assurance on behalf of the three appointees, Mr Sewedo Whenu expressed their appreciation to the Governor for instituting merit as a basis for choosing Permanent Secretaries in the Lagos State Public Service, saying without the initiative, he might never have had the opportunity of becoming one.

He also gave a commitment that the new appointees will not disappoint the Governor and would contribute their quota in supporting the present administration towards moving the state to the next level.

Mr Whenu Sewedo Oluseyi was born on October 30, 1962 and holds a Bachelor of Science (Education) degree in Biology (1984) and a Master of Education with specialization in Curriculum and Instruction (1986) and is also a professional member of the Nigeria Institute of Management, Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM) and the Nigeria Institute of Training and Development.

Dr Omodele Joyce Osunkiyesi was born on 4 November 1959 and holds a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) (1981) Masters in Public Health(MPH),2005 and is a Fellow of the Medical College of General Practice (FMCGP) 1989.

Mr Ariyibi Ajibola Kunle was born on June 6, 1958 and holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with specialization in Fisheries Management and is a member of the Nigeria Association for Public Administration and Management (NAPAM and the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM) respectively.

SIGNED:

HAKEEM BELLO

SPECIAL ADVISER TO H. E ON MEDIA

APRIL 14, 2014

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