Tinubu urges public servants to be accountable to citizens.

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President Bola Tinubu has urged government workers to meet expectations by maintaining public trust, where they should all be answerable to the citizens.

Tinubu, speaking through Vice President Kashim Shettima, delivered the message on Saturday at the Nigeria Excellence Awards in Public Service (NEAPS) event at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. He reaffirmed his government’s commitment to establishing a system where excellence is recognized, and where every public official is appreciated and encouraged to perform at their best.

Tinubu advised them to always remember that the country’s public institutions are not personal businesses but rather, as public servants, they work for the Nigerian people. He emphasized that the occasion was not just about the awards but about instilling a culture of acknowledgment and appreciation within the public service. Tinubu highlighted that despite the existing institutional safeguards, some individuals entrusted with the nation’s welfare still exploit loopholes, leading to irregularities in the public service.

“More than ever, our public service must meet its obligations as a public trust where each official is answerable to the people. Our goal is to establish an environment where they not only excel but also distinguish themselves from those who undermine us. Despite the preventive measures we have in place within our public service, there are still vulnerabilities that some individuals exploit. However, we must consistently remind ourselves that our public institutions are not personal businesses, and each of us serves the Nigerian citizens,” he emphasized. Highlighting the importance of the Nigeria Excellence Awards in Public Service (NEAPS), a collaboration between the private sector and the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Tinubu expressed his full endorsement of the initiative. He stressed the importance of motivating a large portion of the nation’s workforce to set standards and create a positive ripple effect throughout our society.”

He emphasized that rewarding and recognizing individuals are key aspects of successful institutions and nations. He highlighted the importance of honoring those who contribute to upholding values and driving progress, stating that the workforce reflects the entity’s principles. The President praised Nigerian public servants, emphasizing the need to acknowledge their efforts to motivate and inspire others. Tinubu also acknowledged the role of NEAPS in introducing role models and recognizing excellence in serving the nation.

They started a positive chain of actions to promote a culture of hard work and commitment to noble principles in the public service. It’s crucial to embed these distinguished values in our culture. Recognizing and appreciating the efforts of those who work tirelessly to uphold our nation is essential to foster high performance, integrity, and accountability.

Sen. George Akume highlighted NEAPS as a private sector-driven initiative that rewards innovation, purposeful leadership, and hard work in the public service and private sector. The selection process was based on verifiable facts and figures. Efforts will be made to maintain this initiative to inspire excellence in the public service. Award recipients were urged to continue their efforts in advancing Nigeria’s prosperity and progress. Notable awardees included retired Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, President of the Senate Godswill Akpabio, Speaker of the House of Representatives Tajudeen Abbas, and Chief of Staff to the President Femi Gbajabiamila.

Furthermore, Sen. Ibrahim Hadejia, the Deputy Chief of Staff to the President (Office of the Vice President), was honored with the Administrator par Excellence award. Additionally, Gov. Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State received recognition, among others.

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