The Federal Government has set a four-year tenure renewable only once for permanent secretaries in the federal civil service. An authoritative source said yesterday in Abuja that President Umaru Yarâ€™Adua had already approved the new regime.
The source added that a similar eight-year tenure ceiling was approved for directors without prejudice to the extant circular which prescribes 60 years of age and 35 years of service for mandatory retirement.
According to the source, the government took the action following a representation to the President by the Chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission and the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation.
The representation was also supported by the forum held by retired and serving permanent secretaries from July 30 to 31, 2009 where a comprehensive assessment of the service was done.
“One major area of concern is the current inability of the Federal Civil Service to renew itself as a result of chronic lack of vacancies, particularly at the top directorate level,” the recommendation to the President said.
“Additionally, subordinate officers are retiring ahead of their superior officers, creating a grave succession crisis in the service,â€™â€™ the recommendation stated.
It noted that this development had “pervading loss of morale and growing signs of frustration from a large number of officers who are overdue for promotion but are not assured of any hope for advancement.”
The Chairman, FCSC and Head of Service attributed this situation to certain problems,including the general suspension of promotion and employment into the service between 1984 and 1988.The circular directed all ministries,departments and agencies (MDAs) to observe strictly the rules guiding tenured appointments of career public officers who are serving as chief executives of parastatal agencies owned by the government.