The Federal Civil Service boss, Dr Folashade Yemi-Esan has signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) with the Bank of Agriculture(BoA) and Public Service Institute of Nigeria (PSIN), which makes it possible for both retired and serving civil servants in the country to have access to funds or entrepreneurship programs especially in areas concerning agriculture, regardless of the retirement status.
She asked civil servants to embrace this opportunity before preparing for their retirement while they are still in active service.
In her words, ‘We have given a lot of thought to the four-year strategic plan that the Head of the Federation’s Civil Service (HOSCF) office is executing to ensure civil service reform and the well-being of civil servants is the key objective of this strategic plan. Initially the program was aimed at ensuring the welfare of the officers who were about to retire and when we had a first meeting, I said it was too late to start planning for retirement, just before retirement. And that’s the mistake we’ve made over the years in the public service. We wait six, three months to retire before we start training or preparing for retirement and at that point it’s already too late’.
She went on to suggest that they start to plan early for their retirement by joining the agricultural sector since the country’s constitution permits involvement of officials.
On his part, the PSIN Administrator/ Director General, Dr Abduganiyu Obatoyinbo was of the opinion that the initiative has the sole aim of securing the future of civil servants after their retirement. According to him, ‘What we are doing today is securing the future of many public servants who have said they have no hope for their future after retirement. The initiative is also to encourage those entering the service to secure their future after active service as well. The institution has set all the necessary requirements on the ground to update the program’, he concluded.
The Director General of the Bank of Agriculture, Nwa Hassan was of the opinion that with the signing of the MOU, the Head of Service will leave a lasting legacy that others would like to continue. That is, to hire civil servants after they must have retired from active service. He described the Bank of agriculture as government’s own bank and averred that the main mandates of the bank are agricultural finance and that the financial inclusion of the bank remained one of the best as they have over 140 outlets across the country.