POLITICS

Japa: Tinubu orders refunds from civil servants abroad still collecting salaries

President Bola Tinubu has issued a stern directive for federal government civil servants who have relocated abroad while continuing to draw salaries to refund the money.

The announcement was made during the annual “Awards and Gala Night” marking this year’s civil service week in Abuja.

President Tinubu reiterated the importance of accountability in the civil service, stating, “During my recent visit to South Africa, I kept abreast of the week’s activities and was particularly struck by the revelations shared by the Head of the Civil Service regarding employees who relocated abroad while drawing salaries without formally resigning.

“It is heartening to hear that measures have been taken to address this issue, but we must ensure those responsible are held accountable and restitution is made.”]

The President stressed that those involved in the fraudulent activity, along with their supervisors and department heads who aided and abetted the behaviour, must face punishment.

“Culprits must be made to refund the money they have fraudulently collected. Their supervisors and department heads must also be punished for aiding and abetting the fraud under their watch,” he added.

President Tinubu noted the critical role of the Nigerian Civil Service, stressing that it should not be a workplace where misconduct is tolerated.

“The civil service of any nation is too important for such misconduct to take root or be tolerated,” he said.

He further described the Civil Service as “the bedrock, the engine, the locomotive of government,” essential for delivering public goods to citizens.

“As politicians, we are no more than drivers of the locomotives that you provide. Those who say that a nation is as good as its civil service are close to the truth.

“You are the real establishment that remains to pilot government affairs as we politicians come and go,” the President stated.

Folasade Yemi-Esan, Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, had previously brought to light the issue of civil servants relocating abroad while still drawing salaries during a media parley to mark the Civil Service Week.

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