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1.1    Background of the Study

The problem of human resource development and productivity in Nigeria civil service has become very severe such that the civil service is at the point of collapse due to challenges of civil service delivery, over centralization amongst others. To Collins and Chan (2009) in addition to fixing many such other key problems of development, Nigeria state has an urgent problem of disposing her workforce to cope with the demands of the society. The origin, structure and performance of the civil service dates back to the 20th century, with the introduction of the British colonial rule in Nigeria. By 1990, a decentralized colonial service with headquarters in each of the protectorate was established. By 1904, the colony of Lagos state was amalgamated with the protectorate of Southern Nigeria. This was followed by the amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorate in 1914 bringing into existence a country called Nigeria.

By 1914, there were two civil services in the two Nigeria’s (Northern and Southern) headed by a Governor-general in the person of Lord Lugard and two lieutenant Governors each for the North and South respectively, while an administrator was in charge of Lagos. The British imposed a unified civil service in Nigeria, which was mainly concerned with the maintenance of law and order and the mobilization of enough local resources in order to ensure their administration was self sufficient. According to Ciroma (1988) The Nigerian civil service began as a force of occupation designed to facilitate colonial rule and the exploitation of land and its people for the benefit of the colonial masters. The 2nd World War and the attendant worldwide depression left the civil service hopelessly depleted as the civil service played major role of being an essential tool and veritable source of men and material of the allied war efforts. In 1936, the Walayns committee recommended a new policy of staffing the public service by indigenes and for the first time the administrative service which was the cream of colonial services was thrown open to Nigerians.

The Nigerianization scheme went a stage further with the appointment of the foot commission of 1948, the commission observed that the training and recruitment of Nigerians for senior post in the government services was not only necessary to enable Nigerians to take part in the management of their own affairs but also required to enable them keep pace with the constitutional development and programs in the country. Richard constitution of 1946 marked a significant milestone in the history of the civil service in Nigeria; first, it marked the beginning of the regionalization of the hitherto unitary civil service as some attempts were made to regionalize the central department. Regionalization of the civil service took the form of transforming some of the central departments operating in the three regions into non-central departments headed by deputy directors responsible to the director in Lagos.

The Macpherson constitution of 1951 further extended the regionalization policy as more Central Departments were regionalized. The 1954 constitution provided for a full-fledged regional civil service as well as the central (federal) civil service. It brought in the wake many structural changes which were of great significance in the public service commission in the regions as well as at the center. These commissions were granted full powers by the same constitution to appoint, promote, dismiss and discipline junior civil servants. The nationalist agitation for independence brought about the introduction of the Nigerianization policy. The essence of this policy was to make Nigerian civil service entirely staffed, managed and controlled by Nigerians themselves (Omotosho, 2001). To Okunade(1990), the civil servants that occupied positions were unprepared. They lacked the necessary training initiative and administrative acumen. Consequently, the level of productivity in the civil service waned dangerously. Also, Nicolson (1969) noted that Nigerians administrative legacy was one of chaos rather than order and tidiness. There was excessive centralization and absence of delegation. Above all, civil servants for the first two decades after independence were corrupt, inefficient and unproductive. In the face of this alarming decrease in productivity in the civil service, several steps have been taken by successive Nigerian government to strategically position and reposition human resource administration in the country. Such steps include but are not limited to the setting up of the various commissions for reforming the civil service including the Morgan constitution of 1963, Adebo commission of 1971, Udoji commission of 1974 amongst others.

Following the 1974 Udoji report, the civil service was reformed comprehensively, strategically readjusted and strengthened to respond effectively to the demands of developed. Abubakar (1992) opined that; Human resource development is the sin-quo-non for the attainment of efficiency and effectiveness which are the two major goals/objectives of a good civil service. The implication is that, the government of the Nigeria civil service before 1994 had been very low. Therefore, utmost need was for qualified and motivated staff at the right place and at the right time to achieve the objectives to transfer paper plan into actual achievement of all aspect of personal management.

Accordingly, the Udoji reform of 1977 saw human resource development as the main vehicle for enhancing efficiency in the civil service. While the 1978 civil service reform favoured professionalism through human resource training and development as a way of getting into the top cadre of the civil service. The current administration has not done much to improve on what Obasanjo did during his time, except the eighteen thousand naira minimum wage for civil servants which has not yet been adopted by most states in Nigeria. Moreover, the civil service is still considered stagnant and inefficient as the attempts made in the past have had little effect on the promotion of sustainable human resource development and productivity in the civil service. This study therefore attempts to assess the impact of human resource development on productivity in the civil service in Nigeria using the Lagos state civil service commission as a point of appraisal.

1.2       Statement of the Problem

At independence in 1960, so many British officials were replaced with Nigerians but in spite of this, the colonial method of doing things was still predominant in the civil service. In order words, the whites were replaced by Nigerians, yet the West-Minister-patterned general orders and financial institutions remained the operational codes in the Nigerian civil service. The emergent civil servants were inexperienced consequent upon the indigenization policy as most of them occupied positions that their abilities and capabilities in terms of experience, training and qualification cannot cope with. Thus, the quest to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the civil service has always occupied the attention of successive governments. This is because the civil service is the brain box of the modern governments yet the civil service in Nigeria has been characterized by poor performance and inability to translate government policies and programs to reality. Beginning from the period of indigenization of the civil service in 1960’s many things went wrong. For instance, Njoku (1984) believed that the indigenization exercise was done without regard to the interest of the services as the beneficiaries of the policy failed to adhere to the weberian principle that a bureaucrat should neither appropriate his office nor the resources that go with it. On the contrary, the Nigerian civil servants under Gowon’s regime, according to Elaigwu (1986) used their positions to acquire wealth by irregular methods. They became corrupt and in the view of Balogun (1983), they could no longer hide under the cloak of anonymity, impartiality and economic neutrality.

Even in situations where the need for employee training and development is needed and a lot of time and money is committed to staff training and development, the exercise were often inappropriate, haphazard or premised on a faulty diagnosis of organizational training needs. In other situations where training happened to occur, civil servants are deployed without regard to the skill acquired leading to frustration of personnel so trained and also general inefficiency in the system. In Nigerian civil service, the workers are generally under-trapped, underutilized, poorly motivated and consequently perform low below their standard to ensure effective productivity. It is against this background that this work seeks to provide answers to the following pertinent questions.

i.  Is there any link between human resource development and productivity in the civil service?

ii.  Is corruption an impediment to human resource development in the Nigerian civil service?

iii.  Can merit-based recruitment, selection and regular staff training engender productivity in the Lagos State civil service?

1.3     Objectives of the Study

The broad objective of this study is to examine the basic challenges facing human resource development and productivity in Lagos State civil service commission from its establishment to date. Specifically, however, the study aims at the following:

1.  To establish the link between human resource development and productivity.

ii.  To ascertain if corruption is an impediment to human resource development in the Nigerian civil service.

iii.  To determine if merit-based recruitment, selection and regular staff training can engender productivity in the Lagos state civil service.

1.4       Research Questions

i.  Is there a link between human resource development and productivity?

ii.  Is corruption an impediment to human resource development in the Nigerian civil service?

iii.  Can merit-based recruitment, selection and regular staff training engender productivity in the Lagos state civil service?

1.5     Research Hypotheses

Hypothesis I

Ho:  There is no relationship between human resource development and productivity.

Hi:  There is no relationship between human resource development and productivity.

Hypothesis II

Ho:  Corruption is not an impediment to human resource development in the Nigerian civil service.

Hi:  Corruption is an impediment to human resource development in the Nigerian civil service.

1.5     Significance of the Study

The study is significant from the point of view that no available literature or study so far his specifically focused on human resource development and productivity in Lagos State civil service, none has examined the extent to which the civil service as an agent of government has contributed to the development and training of civil servants in Lagos State. Thus, it is going to add to existing body of literature and extend the frontiers of knowledge practically. This research work will be a guide to scholars, policy makers, policy implementers and researchers and evidently serve as a guide to the government on how to promote effective human resource development and productivity in the civil service particularly Lagos State civil service.

1.6      Scope and Limitation of the Study

The scope of the study will be limited to the impact and effect of human resource development and productivity in the civil service as it poses a threat to Lagos State and Nigeria as a whole. Thus, it will focus on all efforts of government to increase human resources development and productivity in Lagos State civil service.

1.7       Definition of Terms

Human Resources: Human resources are the people who make up the workforce of an organization, business sector, or economy. “Human capital” is sometimes used synonymously with “human resources”, although human capital typically refers to a narrower view (i.e., the knowledge the individuals embody and economic growth).

Development: The process in which someone or something grows or changes and becomes more advanced.

Productivity: The quality, state, or fact of being able to generate, create, enhance, or bring forth goods and services. A measure of the efficiency of a person, machine, factory, system, etc., in converting inputs into useful outputs. Productivity is computed by dividing average output per period by the total costs incurred or resources (capital, energy, material, personnel) consumed in that period.

Staff: A group of persons, as employees, charged with carrying out the work of an establishment or executing some undertaking.

Civil Service: Is a collective term for a sector of government composed mainly of career bureaucrats hired on professional merit rather than appointed or elected, whose institutional tenure typically survives transitions of political leadership.

Civil Service Commission: Is a government agency that is constituted by legislature to regulate the employment and working conditions of civil servants, oversee hiring and promotions, and promote the values of the public service.



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