A Civil Society Organisation has kicked against the decision of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation to make senior officers in line for appointment as Permanent Secretary sit for a Computer Based Test to qualify for the position.
The Era for Sustainable Leadership and Accountability Initiative (ESLAI) threatened that it would picket venues of the scheduled examinations, if organisers insist on the test.
The group, in a statement signed by its leader Edwin Olorunfemi on Sunday in Abuja noted that President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the process to select five new permanent secretaries to replace five other retired ones in Ekiti, Katsina, Nasarawa, Enugu and Lagos States.
The Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (HOCSF), Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan in a recent statement said that 47 candidates had been cleared to sit for a written examination to fill the five vacancies.
The candidates were to sit for written and Information Communications Technology (ICT) examinations to select the best five that would fill the vacant posts.
The group however described the process of subjecting a director to ICT proficiency test in Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint Application which was expected of the support staff, as laughable.
“If anything, it is making a mess of the candidates and the entire civil service.
“Our stand still remains that the written and ICT examination slated for May 31 and June 3, be dropped.
”It is worthy of note that, for a civil servant to rise to the level of director, he/she must have sat for about 10 examinations from Grade level 08 to Grade level 17,” the group argued.
“On this backdrop, we are appealing to the Federal Government to drop the idea of written and ICT examination as it is tantamount to waste of time and resources.
“However, we request the government to appraise and appoint permanent secretaries on their past contributions as directors to national development.
”The written examination and ICT proficiency test of May 31 and June 3, be collapsed into oral interviews and interactive sessions for the 47 successful accredited candidates.
“Candidates should be asked on-the-job questions and their achievement so far in their respective positions as directors.
”With this, the best three candidates from each state can be recommended to Mr President for the appointment,” the group submitted.
Mr Olorunfemi expressed hope that the Federal government would heed the advice and act accordingly.