Embargo on employment into civil service still in place – FG

From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja

The Federal Government has reiterated that the embargo on employment into the Federal Public Service since March 2020 is still in force with the exception of health and security sectors as well as certain critical vacancy positions which must be filled.

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Director Communications, Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF), AbdulGaniyu Aminu in a statement was reacting to a Press Conference by the Coalition of Civil Societies for Equity, Justice and Good Governance on ills allegedly committed against the state by the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation.

The CSOs alleged that many universities are grossly understaffed.

The statement read thus: “The attention of the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF) has been drawn to a Press Conference said to have been organised by the Coalition of Civil Societies for Equity, Justice and Good Governance on ills allegedly committed against the state by the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation held at Sharon Ultimate Hotel, Garki, Abuja on 23rd February, 2022.

It was alleged in the conference that many universities are grossly understaffed.

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The Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation hereby presents the following facts for public information and guidance of members of the concerned Civil Societies.

The embargo on employment in the Federal Public Service since March 2020 is still in force with the exception of health and security sectors as well as certain critical vacancy positions which must be filled.

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For the avoidance of doubt, the Office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation is not a recruiting agency. It is therefore wrong to allege that the Office has been secretly recruiting staff to fill up vacancies. In addition, appointment/recruitment into Federal Public Service is not subjected to the whims and caprices of any official. It must conform to processes and procedures as contained in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation circular, Ref. No. 59814/ S.7/ C.8/ IV/T7/140 of 11th August, 2021.

Nevertheless, to ensure that Federal Establishments and tertiary institutions have critical manpower/human resource for sustainability of functions, the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, the Federal Ministry of Education and the National Universities Commission (NUC) ensure that each application for waiver for employment from universities is properly scrutinized before being considered. It is also a breach of administrative procedure for higher institutions of learning to write directly to the OHCSF in an attempt to evade scrutiny by the aforementioned supervising/regulatory authorities. Hence, the Office will not be pressured into granting waiver for such in view of the existing embargo. We wish to emphasise that waivers are not granted retrospectively rather approvals are given before recruitment.

In the meantime, the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation in line with its functions, wishes to reiterate that it remains committed to its mandate of overseeing establishment matters. Therefore, the Office will not be deterred by attempts to distract it from fully implementing the laudable initiatives of the administration, especially as they pertain to the development of human resource.

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