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FG signs MoU with EU on public service reforms

by Business News Report

The Federal Government on Tuesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the European Union on public service reforms. The MoU covers the second phase of the EU programme, Support to the Federal Government Reforms (SUFEGOR) Programme. Signing the MoU in Abuja, Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (HOCSF), Alhaji Bukar Aji, said the MoU was valued at 20 million Euros.

He said the MoU was for a period of five years. He commended the EU for the intervention programme.

“Without these kinds of interventions we may probably over stretch our capacity,” he said. He said that a lot of reforms have been carried out in the Bureau for Public Service Reforms. The way forward is for the Bureau to look into our entire reform programmes that have worked and to work out the details of those that have not worked,” he said.

In his speech, the Director-General, Bureau of Public Service Reforms (BPSR) Mr Joe Abah said that the programme would open avenues for collaboration with the federal government. He said the primary objective of the EU support to public service reform programme was to support the national strategy for public service reforms.

“This strategy will guide the implementation of public services in Nigeria an aspect of it will be led by the National Planning Commission, office of the Head of Service, the office of the Secretary to the government as well as the ministry of finance. The project will support the development of mechanism and allow the implementation of the strategy which will be properly coordinated, monitored and evaluated.

“It will strengthen the generation storage and dissemination of reliable statistics and build the capacity of the National Planning Commission to develop policies and carry out micro economic analysis and modeling. It will also strengthen the technical competencies of the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) in other to improve tax administration and generation of long time revenue in other to contribute to the growth of Nigeria economy.”
He said that the reform programme would strengthen processes, systems, mechanisms and mechanical competence of the staff in the five beneficiary agenciestowards improving the efficiency of the public sector.

Abah said this could be done in the areas of policy planning, development of statistics, revenue generation and performance monitoring.

Also speaking, Amb. Bashir Yuguda, the supervising Minister of National Planning, said that the programme would strengthen the institution. Yuguda commended the EU for the support they have been given to Nigeria as a development partner. Head of the EU Delegation to Nigeria,  Amb. Michel Arrion commended the Federal Government for establishing a national steering committee of public service reforms, which in addition serves as a platform for dialogue.

Arrion said that the EU was funding the project to support Nigeria in its effort to strengthen institutions, systems and processes for public service administration in order to achieve efficient service delivery in various sectors of Nigeria economy. In general, he said, if the reforms in Nigeria will be successful it requires commitment from all sides involved. 

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