By; Abdull-Azeez Ahmed Kadir, Kaduna.
Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai of Kaduna State has said agencies and parastatals under the various ministries would have to undergo “surgical operations” to ensure civil servants have change orientation while telling Permanent Secretaries that they are now Deputy Commissioners and would be held accountable for any ills in their Ministries.
The Governor made this assertion Monday while swearing-in newly appointed eleven Permanent Secretaries, four Special Advisers and four Special Assistants at the Coucil Chambers.
He assured the new Permanent Secretaries that his administration would rely on their wealth of experience and expertise to carry out government bureaucracies and day to day governance of the state.
“I want to assure you that unless one of you retires, God forbid dies, or decide to exit from the service, you are the people we are going to rely upon to work with us to the end of our tenure by God’s grace” he stressed.
El-Rufai said none of the appointees lobbied but were selected based on seniority, their experience, integrity and dedication to duty, and based on the recommendations by the State Head of Service Mrs Alisabatu Dada Onazi which they sat over and scrutinised.
“We have taken our time to form the government, slowly, gradually, learning as we settle down, making our mistake and learning from the mistakes, but using the time to also study those of you that we think have the qualities to assist our change agenda in Kaduna State” he added.
He cautioned the Permanent Secrataries to be up and doing, and take the reins of serive in their various Ministries as the Commissioners may not be grounded in civil service rudiments as they are politcians.
“We Chose you because we expect the best from you. You are deputy Commissioners. Wheneever the Commissioner is not available, you are in charge. But more importantly you are advisers to the Commissioners. Many of them have no public service experience. Many of them are politicians like me that doent know procedures and it is you duty to always advice them to do things in accordance with the rules nd regulation; something that you spend the last twenty to twenty five years of your service learning, studying.
“When things go wrong in terms of administrative procedures it is the Permamnent Secretaries that we would hold accountable. So please do not feel restrained in giving honest advice to our Commissioners; they all want to do the right thing. But sometimes, one does not know how to go about doing the right thing the right way. It is your duty to continue to guide them in that regard” he reiterated.
El-Rufai said the diversity of the state was taken into consideration in the appointments; especially as some Local Government do not have Commissioners or head of parastatals.
He stressed that they were picked also because his administration did not want to work with Permanent Secretries who would spend just two years or less before attaining the retirement age. They appointed those that will be in service till atleast 2018.
On the alleged slowness of his administration slowness, El-Rufai said “it is a slow process, it takes time because we want to be thorough. We would make mistakes because we are human, but it will be mistakes of the heart not intentional or of the mind”.