Federal Character Principle And Merit System In The Nigeria Public Service (An Overview)

Project and Seminar material for Public Administration

Project and Seminar material for Public Administration


The issue of federal character has generated some interest from different scholars. These are divergent or varied opinion in the application of federal character in Nigeria public service. Most scholars opined that merit still remains the only criterion, which assures the rule of objectively professionalism and excellence.

These are critical for good public administration and national development. Other opinion said that if merit is to be adopted as the only criterion for employment admission and recruitment with less educated personnel will be edged out of people or ethnicity will like to be said tracked or derived their right of paralyzed the sheering of national resources. This research proposes to highlight the problem accruing from the public of federal character.

Does this public aim at discrimination in the public sector. The efforts are there for everyone to see if the federal character was set out to encounter other domination today that vice is assuming more friquting dimension merit has been pushed aside and meritocracy has been let use and enthroned.

Table Of Contents

Preliminary Page(s)

  • Title page
  • Certification page
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of contents

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the study
  • 1.2 Statement of the problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the study
  • 1.4 Research question
  • 1.5 Significant of the study
  • 1.6 Scope of the study
  • 1.7 Limitation of the study
  • 1.8 Definition of the study

Chapter Two

2.0 Research Review

  • 2.1 Introduction
  • 2.2 History of Nigeria before the introduction of federal character
  • 2.3 The impacts and the application of federal character principle in Nigeria public service.
  • References

Chapter Three

3.0 Research Methodology and Design

  • 3.1 Introduction
  • 3.2 Research design
  • 3.3 Method of data collection
  • 3.4 Population and sample size
  • 3.5 Sample technique
  • 3.6 Reliability of measuring instrument
  • 3.7 Method of data analysis

Chapter Four

4.0 Presentation and Analysis of Data

  • 4.1 Introduction
  • 4.2 Analysis of data
  • 4.3 Interpretation of result

Chapter Five

5.0 Summary, Conclusion and Recommendations

  • 5.1 Introduction
  • 5.2 Summary of findings
  • 5.3 Conclusion
  • 5.4 Recommendation
  • References
  • Appendix

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Background Of The Study

Federal character system in Nigeria and it management has general lot of controvert among people who have been divided in their opinion about it.

Professional believed that for effective administration, merit should be the basis for employment admission, allocation of resources either, but it merit is use as the 0nly basic in pursuance of government program and government will be disadvantage in attempt to forestall this, and protect the sundry affected in public administration of the government, the principle of federal character was introduced.

Nigeria is indeed a country with many ethic diversities, culture and social dimension and laughter created the problem of federal character instead of the stated or local government area that make up a state to be given a sense of belonging and be adequately represented in Nigeria civil service (Nnabi 1978) more over federal character principle came up as a result of the struggle for the control of groups.

Federal character purse, is a device or an institutionalized strategy to transcend (go beyond the unit if primotal value and loyally of segmented) communities of Nigeria) it is a way of accommodation and in-grating the various ethic group in the country in the main stream of government, it can be the struggle for its control crests and intensities tension among the ethic group because political leaders in office use it to transfer resources to the co-ethic homeland in much to the dissatisfaction of other ethic group.

Again lacks of trust and selfness have often leaded to ethic violence and war. If this is not trial, what can we say about the recent violence and the killing between MODEKEKE, and IFE communities of ISHEKIRI, and UROHOBO, it has also happened in some state like BAYELSA, TARABA and IMO STATE. It is believed however that the introduction of the federal character system, was only mint to solve this problem of ethic wars created harmonious relationship to people from different ethic and equal opportunity in public place.

1.2 Statement Of The Problem

By dividing Nigeria citizen into indigenes and non-indigenes, not of Nigeria but of individual state for purposes of participation in natural institution, institution, it has disenfranchised a growing number of Nigeria citizen.

Federal character is hurting the Nigeria dream and ulen not contributing to the decay of the society since merit is not the criteria that area used to judge Nigeria action, it is tribe, religion and social class that determine what an individual get these create a number of problem to technological development some of these problem in include the following.

Disenchantment with the system: When a person is denied a job, the he is fifty qualified for the guise or alter of federal character, her wouldn’t be happy with the system, this ultimately lead to brain drain, a situation where these qualified professional leave the nation in the drove to other countries when manpower is depleted in such manner their want be any technical development.

– There is no alienation of federal character principle from good government and peace. When it not well implemented and some tribe feel under represented any leader who come from such a tribe will carry put police that would enrich his tribe alone, because he is ethnocentric.

When section of society feel marginalized and under represented, they tend to be caught up with the anti-social behaviours and vandalization. The Nigeria Delta situation is a life example of what poorly implemented federal character policing can vandalized, there can’t be technological development.

1.3 Objective Of The Study

The objective of the study is centered Nigeria public service.

The objective of this research work include:

  1. To show that there exist equitable distribution of public officer in the guest to encourage national integration.
  2. To reveal the equitable distribution of office has nothing to do with mind of our politician, public administration the sprit and sentiment behind the initiating of the principle of federal character.

1.4 Research Question

  1. What federal character principle?
  2. Can federal character principle by likened to equitable distribution of the resources produce from all the state?
  3. What are the aim and objective of initiating federal character principle in Nigeria?
  4. Has their been any marginalization of some component part of the country by some part in the domination?

1.5 Significant Of The Study

The focus of the research work is on federal character principle and national unity in the policy it will certainly contribute to the increasing interest of scholar’s in public administration, government and policy and political science to the Nigeria with patriarchal and it’s implication for national unity.

The study will be appointing departure to scholar social crit9ics and elite and student if Nigeria public administration and politics that the introduction of federal character principle has exacted the plight of the southern ethnic nationalities.

1.6 Scope Of The Study

We can trace the formal emergence and application of the federal character principle in Nigeria to 2004.
However, attempt will be mate to trace the structure of the study explorers the federal character principle as emaciated in the year 1979 and 1989 constitution and its implication for national unit in the policy.

1.7 Limitation Of The Study

During the course of study certain problem were envisaged eventually encountered by the researcher which were beyond the researcher reach.

1.8 Definition Of Terms

“Federal character principle” this is anchored on the distributive desire of the people of Nigeria to promote national unity foster national loyalty and very citizen of Nigeria a sense of belonging to the nation.

Notwithstanding the diversification of the ethnic federal this term has been looked upon by many scholars from different prospective, but here it destined as a system of government in a given nation exist between at last two or more level of government service its power from the constitution” proof wetter”.

Public service by the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria it means that service of the federation or state in respect to capacity in government of federation or state.

Chapter Five

5.0 Summary, Conclusion And Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

This chapter will deal with the summary of the analysis of data. Conclusion will be drawn at the end of the analysis.
Possible recommendation as a way of proffering relevant solution that will help to eradicate or reduce the rate of corruption in the Nigeria public service.

5.2 Summary Of Findings

The application of the principle of federal character merit system is a major issue in Nigeria public administration. It also effect every section of the economy principle adopted to solve the problem of domineering by one ethnic group and create a balance on the work force of the nation.

A situation where ethnic roles have strong influence on the political, economic, social life of the nation, the minority ethnic group will have to face and continue to face discrimination. The constitutional provision of the federal character policy was specifically intended to ameliorate the situation. We have tried in the first four chapter of this project to find out the state and analysis of situation. The application of federal character principle has internal to compromise merit and excellence. It has not some unjustifiable and transfers of officers. It has not even produced the best five officer form the ethnic group in the analysis made; it has been found out that the federal character policy is not popular. It had rather impoverished the nation and killed professionalism. The implementation rather than achieving the dream and aims of the formation of the public and there is no way it can achieve its objective except by adopting merit as yardstick for employment admission and appointment in public or private establishment.

In the process of this research work, we noticed that the reason for the enriched in the federal constitution is that social and political discontent arising from disproportionate access to and control of the source of nation wealth will be forestalled. It has been observed that Nigeria is very good in making policies but bad if not worst execution.
This observation is correct especially in the area of federal character under study.

Before independence and shortly after every efforts was made to encourage the north to the represented in all public establishment.

The civil service was edged out of the easterner in all public establishment leaving the west and north to dominate. But between 1976 and 1984 the composition of the federal government in the second republic and was a negative of the federal character principle, the ruling system military council (SMC) between 1976 and northerners to eight (8) southerners in the federal government in the while the 1984 since had twelve (12) northerners of the total twenty (20) and execution council men (10) northerners out of eighteen (18).

5.3 Conclusion

In the conclusion, we will not fail to say that continuity reference to the geography section i.e. north/south and north (Hausa/Fulani) west (Yoruba) a force of instability in the search for nationhood, there is need for some principle of federal character. This should be best based on states and not on north/south or North West east basis. I believe that we can apply the principle of federal character adequately in every section without sacrificing merit and quality. When we adopt merit and quality as yardstick on every business of federal institution and its agencies results will be very positive. It is the opinion of this paper that government official should not be used there position to make their establishment exclusion only to the brothers and sisters or there tribes.

5.4 Recommendation

The idea of using quota system is to fill up vacancies or position should be se-emphasized.

  1. Merit should be the basis for appointment, admission and employment.
  2. Also to promote professionalism and industry
  3. And a dear delegation of duties right and obligation of higher public servants
  4. Recommend among other things that the problem which the doctrine of federal character as well as other forces like ethnicity, station and regionism.
  5. Basic health care, social insurance of old age housing, food etc is to be assured to all citizen and hence to all national or ethnic group.

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