Nigerian Civil Service
The Nigerian Civil Service consists of employees in Nigerian government agencies other than the military. Most employees are career civil servants in the Nigerian ministries, progressing based on qualifications and seniority.
The Nigerian Civil Service has its origins in organizations established by the British in colonial times. Nigeria gained full independence in October 1960 under a constitution that provided for a parliamentary government and a substantial measure of self-government for the country's three regions. Since then, various panels have studied and made recommendations for reforming of the Civil Service. A major change occurred with the adoption in 1979 of a constitution modeled on that of the United States.
In August 2009 the Head of the Civil Service, Stephen Osagiede Oronsaye, proposed reforms where permanent secretaries and directors would spend a maximum of eight years in office. The reform, approved by President Umaru Yar'Adua, would result in massive retirement of Permanent Secretaries and Directors, many of whom are from the North.
Organizational Structure: The civil service is mainly organized around the federal ministries, headed by a minister appointed by the President, who must include at least one member of each of the 36 states in his cabinet. The President's appointments are confirmed by the Senate of Nigeria. There are less than 36 ministries. In some cases a Federal minister is responsible for more than one ministry (e.g. Environment and Housing may be combined), and a minister may be assisted by one or more ministers of State. Each ministry also has a Permanent Secretary, who is a senior civil servant.