President Muhammadu Buhari, on Thursday swore in 18 newly appointed Permanent Secretaries, warning them to shun corruption, incompetence and excesses.
The inauguration came 24 hours after the president announced portfolios for his ministers.
He said: “I must, however, sound a note of warning. It is within public domain that ministers as chief executives of their ministries as well as other government officials involved in policy formulation and implementation often complain of the intolerable levels of incompetence, indifference or even suspected sabotage by some of the top echelon of the civil service.
“Even where Permanent Secretaries, in some instances, are exempted from these accusations, they are still responsible and liable for failing to provide the required leadership, control and direction.
“This administration will not condone any excesses, indifference, incompetence, and corrupt practices in any form. Permanent Secretaries are, therefore, advised to note these words of caution and disseminate them to all civil servants accordingly.
“I am sure the Permanent Secretaries and all other civil servants appreciate the fact that I have always considered the civil service as an indispensable reservoir of experience, expertise and loyalty. I, therefore, consider the service as a dependable ally in my quest to change this country for the better.”
The President, who congratulated the Permanent Secretaries on their appointments, also tasked them on the financial prudence.
He reminded them that the expectations of Nigerians from the government were high, restating his resolve to create jobs and diversify the economy.
Sixteen of the newly appointed Permanent Secretaries took oath of office.
They are: Ayotunde Adesugba, Taiwo Abidogun, Dr. Bukar Hassan, Mrs. Wakama Belema Asifieka, Mr. Jalal Ahmad Arabi, Mr. Sabiu Zakar, Mrs. Obiageli Phyllis Nwokedi, Mr. Aminu Nabegu.
Others are Mr. Alo Williams Nwankwo, Dr. Shehu Ahmed, Mr. Ogbonnaya Innocent Kalu, Mrs. Nuratu Jimoh Batagarawa, Mr. Christian Chinyeaka Ohaa, Mr. Bassey Akpanyung, Mr. Louis Edozien and Dr. Ugo Roy.
The two other Permanent Secretaries, who were absent at the inauguration, were out of the country on official assignment. They are Mr. Bamgbose Olukunle Oladele and Alhaji Mahmoud Isa-Dutse.