WORK ETHICS AND ATTITUDES OF CHRISTIAN CIVIL SERVANTS IN SELECTED SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN ABEOKUTA SOUTH OF OGUN STATE
The standard of education in Nigeria is rapidly depreciating or falling and these can be traced to poor and lackadaisical attitude of supervisors of student-teachers. Also, the issue of work ethics and attitudes of civil servants especially teachers in Ogun state remains the major challenges confronting the State. It can be observed that rules and regulations are no longer observed in the civil and public service probably because of lack of proper motivations on the part of the government and those that manage our educational system. Methodologically, the population for this study consisted of Christian civil servants in public sectors in selected secondary schools in Abeokuta south, Ogun state which are Abeokuta African Grammar School, Abeokuta Baptist Boys College and Abeokuta Girls Grammar School. Interview of teachers were conducted because it is economical, convenient and practicable way of obtaining relevant, detailed and valid data. Relevant written records, recent books, journals, articles, internet facilities, and other library materials on work ethics, public service code of conducts and school management were used. This research has clearly stated here what the concept of work ethics and civil service are. In course of doing this, it had established the fact that work ethics and the positive attitudes of teachers in Ogun state pursue the same objective. Both are out for character and national building in the life of the students, parents and the government in any given society. Consequently, for education to drive home its set objectives in the life of the people certain values and ethical issues/concepts as it appears in our education system must be in place. When such ethical issues as fairness and Equity, power and Authority, Justice and Injustice, Freedom and Responsibility, punishment, Discipline, Rewards, Equality and Inequality, are adequately harness in our education system, the set objectives will easily be achieved. It recommends that today’s civil service needs to rediscover the time-honoured inbuilt system of training, retraining and adaptive skills in consonance with modern work practices and processes. It must imbibe the culture of innovation both in imagination and routine works as well as in developing appropriate tools for anticipating change and challenges. It must be able to institutionalize change in modern governance and societal development. It must see itself as a tool for the promotion of growth, peace, stability, development and democracy. PTA teachers should be guaranteed the security of their jobs to enable them put in the best in the discharge of their duties and responsibilities. The government should ensure the permanence nature of their service. The massive purge of the civil servants by successive regimes in the bid to reducing the cost of governance should be discouraged in Ogun state.
1.1 Background to the Study
Civil service is a feature of all nations practiced at federal, state and local levels (Igbokwe-Ibeto et al 9). The public service of any country stands out as the major machinery of government for the formulation and implementation of public policies. It does this by translating the plans and programmes of government into concrete public goods and services for the use of the citizenry. Whatever the system of government in practice in a country, the public service is designed to be the prime mover of the social, academic and economic development of a nation (Oyedele 33).
The civil service has always been the tool available to Nigerian government for the implementation of developmental goals and objectives. It is seen as a pivot for growth of Nigerian economy. It is responsible for the creation of an appropriate and conducive environment in which the economy can perform optimally and it is this catalytic role of the public service that propelled government all over the world to search continuously for better ways to deliver their services (Ikelionwu 1).
For any organization, governmental or non-governmental, a firm or an industry, a factory or a company, social or political, economical or even school organization, it must have standard rules and regulation. An industry for instance that aims at producing high quality products in order to compete well with its competitors in the market has to take a number of measures, its to ensure that it produce high quality materials be it raw materials, expertise, machines, and the control unit of the organization ensures that raw materials or the final products gel screened before any production goes out for sale in the market.
In order to achieve the above target position, they need constant supervision by superior officers to ensure compliance with laid down rules / regulation were (ethics). Thus, the same things apply to education industry. The education industry like any other organization has raw materials in forms of tools, apparatus instruments and other instructional materials. This industry has targets, and a production process in form of selection, admission procedures, teaching staff, and non teaching staff in order to process their products for marketing in the public. These products (student’s teachers) must meet the set standard before they can be marketable. This research takes the position of professional ethics and attitudes as the main issue in the profession and production of teachers.
As a major instrument for implementing government policies, the civil service in Nigeria is expected to be professionally competent, loyal and efficient. Nonetheless, it is now denounced for being corrupt, poorly trained and poorly attuned to the needs of the poor. Ironically, the civil service is expected to play the key role in managing and implementing reform programs in the country. This has led to a number of complex agency problems yet to be resolved. However, it is broadly acknowledged and Nigerian experience attest to this, that when the incentive structure in the civil service remain poor, its efficiency as well as ability to effect policy such as that directed towards reducing poverty will remain very low (Salisu 18). Johnson also maintained that every employer must have means to remove those who do not contribute to its mission (Johnson 34). It is as a result of the above analogy and in response to the questions posed that this study examined the subject matter “work ethics and attitudes of Christian civil servants especially teachers in Abeokuta”.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Since Governments all over the world exist to provide goods and services (public goods) for its citizens with the primary aim of improving their living condition and the major vehicle of translating these laudable concerns into a reality rests squarely on civil service that is efficient, effective and result-oriented. Unfortunately, the unsatisfactory service delivery of the civil service especially teachers in developing countries has spurred controversies among practitioners and scholars alike in the field of education in Ogun state.
In fact, many scholars have made efforts to ascertain the factors that impinge on effective and efficient service delivery of teachers in Ogun state, yet all efforts proved abortive (Ojiaku 4). This accounted for the near collapse of the educational system in Ogun State (Adegoroye 1) due to teacher’s negative attitude which had direct impact their teaching profession in Abeokuta South with reoccurring failures of Abeokuta students in WAEC/NECO which may be traceable to some certain foundational problems. Therefore, this research seeks to investigate the work ethics and attitude of civil servants towards their profession in selected secondary schools of Ogun state.
It is regrettable that Christian Civil servants should fight for the society in eradicating exploitation, indiscipline and unholy sharing of wealth has become part and parcel of corruption that is on-going in Nigeria especially in Ogun state ministry of education. Most of the Christians no more allow Christian values to guide their actions in work place. Infact, it is more worrisome to note that Pastors who should have fought absenteeism, bribery, indiscipline, sexual abuses and corruption are now benefiting from moral decay that persist in the Civil service factors militating against Christians ethics in Abeokuta.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The general objective of this research is to investigate the nature, dynamics and moral conducts in work ethics and attitudes of Christian civil servants especially teachers in selected secondary school in Abeokuta south of Ogun State. More specifically the study aimed to achieve the following set of specific objectives:
- To investigate the concept of work ethics and civil service
- To evaluate the historical development of civil service in Nigeria including its structure and functions.
- To re-examine the history of education in Nigeria, the role and attitude of Christian civil servants in the growth and development of Education in Abeokuta South Secondary Schools.
- To assess the concept of teaching and teaching strategies in Abeokuta South Secondary Schools.
- To identify the place of job motivation and incentives of civil servants in Abeokuta South Secondary Schools.
- To analyze the ethical challenges facing Christian civil servants in Abeokuta South, its effects and the possible solutions.
1.4 Scope of the Study
The study focuses on and limited to the issue of work ethics and attitudes of Christian civil servants in Abeokuta African Grammar School, Abeokuta Baptist Boys College and Abeokuta Girls Grammar School alone; it is structured into five different compartments. The first compartment introduced the research topic, the problems, scope and significant of the study including its methodology. The second chronicle explored conceptual and theoretical insights central to the subject matter of this research.
The third examines the work content in the context of work ethics and attitudes of Christian civil servants in selected secondary school in Abeokuta South of Ogun State by evaluating the history of education in Ogun state, the practical assessment of the concept of civil service and its ethics among teachers, the ethical investigation of teaching and its strategy, its historical problems and the role of Christian Civil Servants in the development of Abeokuta South and it holistically assess the issue of job motivation and incentives in Abeokuta South secondary schools.
It also starts the investigation of the laid down work’s ethical codes in the Ogun State Civil Code of Conducts, the type of attitudes that are predominant among Christian’s civil servants in Abeokuta and what can be done to develop right work ethics and attitudes in its workforce through the use of interviews of civil servants in selected secondary schools in Abeokuta South.
The fourth is centered on the ethical effects of work and attitudes on Christian civil servants in selected secondary school in Abeokuta South of Ogun State by assessing the ethical challenges facing Christian civil servants, its effects and the possible solution to the malady in Abeokuta South of Ogun State. The fifth states the summary of findings; conclusion, contribution to knowledge and appropriate recommendations were made.
1.5 Significance of the Study
The study will be highly valuable because it deals with the meaning, purpose, foundation, structure and value of civil service in Nigeria. It will be of great benefits to civil servants especially teachers. It will also unveil the inherent danger that lies in their unethical behavior of teachers, and will enable the civil servants to have an insight and take necessary correction to improve on their service delivery in the public service.
This research will be a useful material to researchers, the government, teachers and students of management sciences, social sciences and humanities. It will serve as an achievement in the academic circles. While the topic: “Work Ethics and Attitudes of Christian Civil Servants” may not be strange to them, its application to the private and public schools will definitely arouse their interest, which can be in the area of increasing knowledge, adopting its recommendations or serve as a foundational document for further research.
1.6 Research Methodology
A number of methods were adopted in this research, it includes theoretical method through which contributions of some written records, recent books, journals, articles, internet facilities, and other library materials work ethics, public service code of conducts and school management, and related topics were used. The population for this study consisted of Christian civil servants in public sectors especially in selected secondary schools in Abeokuta south, Ogun state which are Abeokuta African Grammar School, Abeokuta Baptist Boys College and Abeokuta Girls Grammar School. The use of interview was employed because it is economical, convenient and practicable in order to be able to obtain comprehensive and details information on the issue of work ethics and attitudes of Christian civil servants in selected secondary school in Abeokuta south of Ogun state.
1.7 Definition of Terms
The following are the salient terms that are used in this research:
- Work: It is the activities and labour necessary to the survival of society. It is the physical or mental activity directed toward the accomplishment of a task; the labour by which a person earns his livelihood. Man as created was intended to work.
- Ethics: The word ethics is from the Greek word ήθος, originally the lonic form of έθος meaning “character.” Johnson states that ethics is the discipline dealing with what is good and bad or right and wrong; a group of moral principles or a set of values. It is therefore the system or code by which attitudes and actions are determined to be either right or wrong (Johnson 319). Gardner also asserts that ethics is the critical study of morality, which consists of a systematic analysis of the nature of the moral life of man, including both the standards of right and wrong by which his conduct may be guided and the goods toward which it may be directed (Gardner 3).
- Christian: Christian is the name given by the Greeks or Romans, probably in reproach, to the followers of Jesus. It was first used at Antioch. The names by which the disciples were known among themselves were “brethren,” “the faithful,” “elect,” “saints,” “believers.” But as distinguishing them from the multitude without, the name “Christian” came into use, and was universally accepted. This name occurs but three times in the New Testament (Acts 11:26; 26:28; 1 Peter 4:16).
- Civil Service: Civil service is commonly used as the synonym of the machinery of the government to assist the decision makers (Adamolekun 4). It is normally used when referring to the body of men and women employed in a civil capacity and non political career basis by the Federal and state Governments primarily to render and faithfully give effect to their decisions and implementation (Ipinlaiye 8) and that development involves economic growth, some notion of equitable distribution, provision of health care, education, housing and other essential services (Naomi 4).