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Digitalisation Project: Nigerian Civil Service Partners AIG To launch Standard Operating Procedures

-by Barnabas Esiet.

The Nigerian Civil Service in Partnership with the Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG) has developed and launch Standard Operating Procedures SOPs for Flagship Digitalisation Project.

The SOPs are globally recognised as manuals that apply step-by-step instructions compiled by an organisation to assist its personnel perform their operational tasks accurately and effectively.

A joint statement by the Office of The Head of Civil Service of The Federation (OHCSF) and the AIG, says the partnership has heralded the development and handing over of twenty-six (26) documented SOPs manuals to the OHCSF and the Federal Civil Service by AIG for all processes carried out in the Office.

The handing over ceremony which took place in Abuja was well attended by Directors, AIG team, SOPs champions in the OHCSF and the Press.

While speaking at the event, the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr. Folasade Yemi-Esan disclosed that the main objective of SOPs is to develop an effective system that complies with industry–specific regulations and standards to significantly reduce or avoid operational errors as well as unwanted work variations.

L-R –  Permanent Secretary, Service Policies and Strategies Office, in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation Dr Emmanuel Meribole, Permanent Secretary Special Duties Office(SDO) in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Mrs Ibiene Roberts, Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, Chairman African Initiative for Governance(AIG), Mr Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, Permanent Secretary  Career Management Office(CMO) in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Alhaji Mamman Mahmuda and  Permanent Secretary Service Welfare Office (SWO)in the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Evelyn Ngige during the Official  Handing over of the Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation( OHCSF) Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) in Abuja.

According to Dr Yemi Esan, the adoption of SOPs will ensure efficient, effective, and productive civil service, adding that for a dynamic civil service to be achieved, it was pertinent to have laid down standards of operation. She commended the departmental champions for their commitment and assiduous input that made the actualization of the SOPs a reality.

The Chairman of the Africa Initiative for Governance, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, underscored the need to get all level if governments in Nigeria to document their operating processes. “The real issue is how fast we are able to get the entire Nigerian Government and not just the civil service to document its operating procedures in this way, and then going further to obtain ISO 9001:2015 certification, and finally digitalising all civil service functions and operations” He said.

Aig-Imoukhuede further explained that the new process will enable users of government service to interact with the service through official websites instead of the current inefficient paper-based method.

According to the statement, the OHCSF now has Standard Operating Procedures for every single process or workflow carried out by all its 26 departments. Each business process has been risk-assessed and proper control mechanisms have been put in place to ensure full compliance with international best practices. The selected MDAs on the initial pilot phase include; Federal Civil Service Commission, Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, State House, and Ministry of Transportation.

R-L -The Chairman African Initiative for Governance (AIG), Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede handing over the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) Manuals to the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan in Abuja.

For her part, the Permanent Secretary Special Duties Office (SDO), Ibiene Roberts, said the SOP manual contains a standardised process and detailed instructions that will help the staff of the Head of Service to perform tasks safely and develop an effective business system.

In the same vein, the Permanent Secretary, Service Policy and Strategies Office (SPSO), in the office of the Head of Service, Dr Emmauel Meribole, affirmed that “the actualisation of the SOPs is a welcome development, whose essence is to ensure uniformity.” He urged all Civil Servants to make effective use of the launched SOPs for the good of the Service and as a yardstick for measuring standards in the Civil Service.

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