Reform of public service irreversible – BPSR Boss

Fri, Oct 14, 2022
By editor

General News

THE Bureau of Public Service Reforms (BPSR), is reviewing its strategic plan to accommodate the aspirations of the incoming administration in 2023.

The Director-General of the Bureau, Dasuki Arabi said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja.

He said that although the bureau had no fear of any disruption of its activities when a new administration comes in after the elections, it was important to provide a plan to accommodate its focus.

“We are not shaken in any way that this administration is coming to an end.

“That is why we are even reviewing our strategic plan this year to see how we can accommodate the aspirations of the incoming government.

“But if you look through the records, you will see that this bureau came into existence in 2004 and we have been driving our plans, our progress and strategy since then.

“So we are confident that whoever comes will have no alternative but to continue with the work we are doing, because we are working on improving the public service that is the engine room of government.

“They cannot deliver on their campaign promises if they don’t have a well-managed and functioning public service.

“For them to succeed, they should continue with what we are doing,’’ Arabi said.

According to him, the reform of public service is necessary for the country to remain competitive.

“The digitisation that government is driving is not a one off programme for Nigeria, but the whole world is going toward that direction.

“Now we have a digital economy ministry, we have a lot of institutions created to support the transition to e-government to a digital economy.

“We cannot drop out of that because that is what is obtained all over the world,’’ he said.

Arabi said that the Bureau looked forward to more encouragement from the incoming government

“So that we do more, because the more we work, the more transparent governance and public service delivery becomes, the more safety and assurance of safety of funds of government.

“We are opening government with the digitisation programme, from the comfort of your room now, you can know how much has been appropriated, how much has been disbursed, how much has been released,’’ he said.

The director-general said that the introduction of performance ranking of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) was to encourage transparency in governance.

“I will use this privilege to encourage the politicians as they are getting set to come in, that the Bureau has a team player and in us they have that background to implement their programmes.

“Most importantly, carry forward the public service so that we will be among the first 20 in the world by the year 2025.’’

He said that so far, the reforms had covered the entire public service, including the electoral process.

“A lot of reforms have taken place around elections, for instance INEC use of IT in some of their processes.

“So we are hoping that the 2023 general elections will be rancour free and successful,’’ he said.

Arabi said that the Bureau had published a book on lessons of the 2015 elections, to discourage trouble makers and galvanise citizens to participate in national elections.

“We are hoping and confident that this will be a very peaceful and quiet election and there will be peaceful transition.

“In addition to this, the Bureau is working with the Nigeria Economic Summit Group and other development partners, local and international, to set an agenda and to prepare a peaceful transition.

“Not a handover per se, but something that will guide the incoming administration,’’ he said.

He urged civil servants to go out and vote and encourage their families to do so.

The BPSR boss said that another focus of the organisation was to set the platform for transition to an excellent public service that would provide the entire infrastructure that the private sector needed to thrive.

“We are providing an enabling environment for private sector to thrive, and as private sector is thriving, a lot of employment opportunities are being created and generated.

“So that where government is not able to pick all unemployed persons, there will be space within the private sector to provide employment for them.

“That is why the Bureau is working a lot with the Nigeria Economic Summit Group and their various programmes, setting agenda and encouraging the private sector to have confidence in the country,’’ he said.

He encouraged the youth to have “confidence in their country, love their country, and have this trust that it will be better’’.

“We don’t have any other country other than Nigeria. Wherever you go after two three days, you will be looking for Nigerian restaurant.

“You will be looking for Nigerian food, you will be looking for Nigerians where they are, that means home is home.

“All hands must be on deck to improve the fortunes of this country.’’ (NAN)