By the end of 2022, a timeline to finalize the harmonisation of salaries of civil servants in ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) in the country will be ready, the Federal Government said on Tuesday.
Already a committee set up by President Muhammadu Buhari is looking into the various salary scales in the public service.
The Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan announced this at the Head of Service physical engagement/ interview session with the African Initiative for Governance (AIG) on public service leaders’ programme in Abuja.
Yemi-Esan pointed out a huge difference in the salaries in the various sectors of the public office and said a lot of work is being done on salaries.
“Even right now, I chair a Presidential Committee on Harmonisation of Salaries in the public service. Actually it took a lot of work.
“It is unfortunate that the differences are quite wide and that is the problem that the committee is having right now. It might not be possible to bring those that are high there down.
“Also it won’t be possible to bring every body to that high salary grade level. So what we are trying to do is to find a way of bringing most people up and then also find what we can do with those that are already very high.
“But let me assure you that a lot of work is being done. And we are working with the salaries, income and wages commission. They are also part of this committee, the budget office is the secretariat.
“The Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Labour, everybody is on this committee. And the good thing about the harmonisation of salaries is that we all agreed that something must be done about especially those that are core civil servants, that earned the lowest salaries.
“I think we all agreed on that. But the issue now is whee, we are working on it. My prayer is really that by the end of the year we would have come to the conclusion,” Yemi-Esan said.
On the high salaries in some sectors, she advised civil servants not to be discouraged but to work hard to be “high flyers” that will get them noticed and open to opportunities that will give them extra cash apart from their salaries.
The Head of Service stressed: “But having said that, it is also important for me to reiterate that we shouldn’t allow the salaries to discourage us. I think it is important and fair that I say that. Yes, the salaries is not good. But there are also 101 other opportunities.
“I grew up in the service and I know that once you have been identified as a high flyer, the opportunities will come your way even without searching for those opportunities to make a few extra naira aside from your salaries.
“So that is why I keep saying that it is important to be hard working. Let me give a practical example while I was growing up in the service.
“Any assignment I’m given, it doesn’t take me more than two, three days to write my report and submit it without anybody asking for it. I just took it upon myself that whatever assignment I am given, as soon as I get back, my report is ready to be submitted.
“And the funny thing is that I was in ministry of health and after sometime, the permanent secretary actually asked that who is this person.”