In a bid to equip the National Youth Service, NYSC staff particularly at the directorate level with basic capacity to perform optimally in line with global best practices, the Director-General of the scheme, Brigadier-General Johnson B. Olawunmi has on Monday inaugurated a one-week preparatory course for state coordinators in Makurdi, the Benue State capital.
The maiden event which is the first of its kind had its theme: “Succession Planning Strategy for Effective Administration” attracted participants drawn from thirty states across the federation and was designed to give intensive baseline training to potential state coordinators of the of the NYSC scheme.
Addressing stakeholders at Nigerian School of Military Engineering, NASME, venue of the event, the director- general of NYSC said that the training was also part of his vision and determination to equip potential managers of the scheme from the rank of assistant directors with requisite knowledge and empowerment to enhance efficient service delivery and general success of the scheme.
Olawunmi who observed with concern that unlike the military and other institutions where officers undergo training courses to advance in rank, the NYSC did not have such deliberate policy structure to prepare its staff towards taking responsible leadership positions.
While other MDAs routinely sent their staff for regular courses at reputable training institutions like ASCON, Lagos Business School, Nigerian Defence Academy etc. The NYSC was running conventional Civil Service structure with little or no training of its manpower base to fit into the responsibility assigned to them,” he maintained.
He further intimated that the scheme was carefully packaged in line with the change agenda of the present administration to address the issues of corruption, unnecessary bureaucracy as well as gross inefficiency in the public sector.
The director general further charged the participants to take the training serious with all sense of attention and dedication even as he announced that government had last week approved the dismissal of 11 staff for engaging into different acts of serious misconduct, while nine others were given various sanctions such as warning letters, loss of seniority, termination of appointment and compulsory retirement from service.
In her remarks, NYSC Human Resource Management, Mrs. R. K. Kwaki said that the course had become necessary and expedient as state coordinators were not only the representatives of the DG at state levels, but serve as image makers, inspectors, counselors, security expert, guardians and accounting officers.
Earlier in her welcome address, Benue State Co-ordinator of NYSC, Mrs. Esther Atemenwan lauded the director general of NYSC for his innovative ideas and said that hosting the maiden edition of this scheme in her territory was a unique opportunity, adding that it would chart a new course and make new administrators to subsequently assume and lead a better leadership posture wherever they would be posted.