The Federal Government has put in place a plan to empower civil servants, both active and retired. Long after their service to the nation.
The Head of Civil Service of the Federation (HOCSF) Dr Folasade Yemi Esan, made this known on Wednesday at the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Bank of Agriculture (BOA) and Public Service Institute of Nigeria (PSIN).
The essence of the initiative, Yemi Esan said, was for quick access to funds or entrepreneurship programmes for the civil servants, especially in areas of agricultural business.
While appreciating managers of BOA and PSIN, she urged civil servants in active service, in particular, to make use of the opportunity before preparing for their retirements.
“We have given a lot of thought about the four years strategic plan which the office of the HOCSF is running to ensure the civil service is reformed and welfare of civil servants is the key objective of that strategic plan.
“Initially the programme was to seek for the welfare of the officers who were about to retire and when we had an initial meeting, I said it is too late to start planning for retirement just before retirement.
“And that is the mistake we’ve made over the years in the civil service, we wait until six, three months to retirement before we start training or preparing for retirement and at that time, it is already too late,” she explained.
She, therefore, urged civil servants to start planning for retirement as early as possible by going into the agricultural sector, as the country’s constitution allows civil servants to be fully involved in it.
In his remarks, PSIN administrator/director-general Dr Abduganiyu Obatoyinbo said that the initiative hopes to secure the future of civil servants after they retire from service.
What we are doing today is to keep securing the future of many civil servants who thought they have no hope for their future after retirement.
‘’This initiative also aimed at encouraging those entering the service to secure their future after active service as well,” he said.
BOA Director-General Nwa Hassan also said that with the signing of the MoU, HOS will leave a legacy that others would like to continue, to hire civil servants after they retire from active service.
“BOA is the government’s own bank and the main mandates of the bank are agricultural finance and I can tell you that our financial inclusion is one of the best as we have over 140 outlets across the country,” he said.
He also assured officials that accessing funding for the initiative would never be a difficult task, he, therefore, encourages civil servants to take advantage of the opportunity.