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AN ASSESSMENT OF THE IMPACT OF MONETIZATION AS A REFORM POLICY ON CIVIL SERVANTS COMMITMENT IN NIGERIA

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AN ASSESSMENT OF THE IMPACT OF MONETIZATION AS A REFORM POLICY ON CIVIL SERVANTS COMMITMENT IN NIGERIA

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study

All around the world, the main purpose of governments is to improve the quality of life for their population by providing public goods and services. Effective, efficient, and goal-oriented public bureaucracy is the main engine for turning these admirable concerns into reality. This explains why, in order to tackle the problems of growth and development, governments everywhere have placed a growing priority and concentration on administrative reforms policy, particularly in developing economies of Nigeria.One such policy introduced in the early 2000s is monetization, which sought to streamline the public sector by replacing in-kind benefits with cash payments to civil servants. Monetization was envisioned as a means to curb corruption, reduce government expenditure, and improve service delivery.

Similarly, monetization policy was introduced with the aimed to combat corruption, curb wastage of government resources, eliminate service delivery delays, address stagnation in senior civil service positions, and reduce personnel costs. Beyond that, monetization, as a monetary policy approach, involves converting various benefits traditionally enjoyed by public servants into cash payments. Interestingly, some of these benefits had already undergone full or partial monetization prior to 1999 (Ekaette, 2019). These benefits include leave grants, meal subsidies, entertainment allowances, duty tour allowances, and allowances for domestic servants and drivers, among others (Georgia, 2019). However, the items earmarked for monetization include residential accommodation, provision of vehicles (including fueling/maintenance), medical treatment provision, utilities (electricity, water, and telephone), and provision of personal aides, as well as housing and transportation allowances. Georgia further noted that this led to the enactment of the "Political, Public, and Judicial Office Holders Act 2003."

Furthermore, the complex structure of the civil service, coupled with a lackadaisical attitude towards government assets by employees, provided justification for the introduction of the monetization policy as part of the extensive civil service reforms in 2003. This reform aimed to curb wastage by addressing poor commitment and low productivity within the Nigerian civil service, which were attributed to inadequate pay and a skewed reward system with significant expenditures on maintaining government properties. On the other hand, the monetization policy was specifically designed to enhance workers' commitment, minimize waste, improve efficiency in resource allocation, and promote accountability in government operations. Prior to this reform, several administrative reforms had been implemented in the Nigerian civil service, with at least six major ones occurring since the country gained independence in 1960. These included the Morgan reform in 1964, Elwood reform in 1966, Udoji reform in 1974, Dotun Phillip reform in 1988, and Ayida reform in 1994. Additionally, government sometimes wrongly assume that their reward pattern is the best for their employees and this often has adverse consequences since the employees are never consulted. In essence, employees commitment to their jobs and their efforts are often not addressed properly, creating room for false claims, agitations and labour conflicts. Nevertheless, it is incumbent upon government to encourage high employee performance through the implementation of appropriate motivational policies aimed at fostering a positive work environment, increasing productivity, and fostering harmony among employees. Therefore, a survey will be conducted to assess the impact of monetization as a reform policy on civil servants commitment in Nigeria.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Before the implementation of monetization, civil servants in Nigeria often received non-monetary benefits such as housing, transportation, and utilities as part of their compensation package. Since the government directly supplied these benefits, there were chances for misuse, inefficiency, and poor administration. However, the goal of monetization was to promote fiscal responsibility and discipline by transforming these non-cash advantages into cash allowances.Despite the intentions behind monetization, its implementation has raised concerns regarding its effects on civil servants' commitment to their duties. On the other hand, Olasupo and King (2022) argue that the shift to cash allowances may lead to a decline in motivation, job satisfaction, and productivity among civil servants. They contend that the removal of in-kind benefits could undermine the perceived value of compensation, resulting in decreased morale and commitment in the workplace.

Moreover, there are concerns that the monetization policy may exacerbate inequalities within the civil service, particularly among lower-income employees who may struggle to afford essential services previously provided by the government (Onyema & Ukwandu, 2019). This could potentially widen the gap between different categories of civil servants and affect overall organizational cohesion and effectiveness. On the other hand, monetization advocates contend that it encourages equity and transparency in the allocation of resources within the public service. The strategy instills a sense of autonomy and responsibility in civil servants by enabling them to make independent decisions about their needs and preferences through the provision of monetary allowances.

However, empirical evidence on the impact of monetization on civil servants' commitment in Nigeria is limited. Existing studies have primarily focused on the macroeconomic implications of the policy or its effects on government finances, overlooking its consequences at the individual and organizational levels. It is in the light of these that the study seeks to assess the impact of monetization as a reform policy on civil servants commitment in Nigeria.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The main purpose of this study is to assess the impact of monetization as a reform policy on civil servants commitment in Nigeria. Specifically, the study will;

Determine whether Monetization as a Reform Policy is effectively implemented in the Nigerian civil service.

Determine the level of employees acceptability of Monetization as a Reform Policy  in the Nigerian civil service.

Determine the impact of Monetization as a Reform Policy on employees performance in the Nigerian civil service.

Identify the factors affecting the effective implementation of Monetization as a Reform Policy in the Nigerian civil service.

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared for the study:

To what extent is Monetization as a Reform Policy effectively implemented in the Nigerian civil service?

What is the level of employees acceptability of Monetization as a Reform Policy  in the Nigerian civil service?

What is the impact of Monetization as a Reform Policy on employees' performance in the Nigerian civil service?

What are the factors influencing the effective implementation of Monetization as a Reform Policy in the Nigerian civil service?

1.5 Research Hypotheses

Ho: Monetization as a reform policy has no significant impact on civil servants' commitment in Nigeria.

Ha: Monetization as a reform policy has a significant impact on civil servants' commitment in Nigeria.

1.6 Significance of the Study

The findings of this study will contribute to improving the management of the civil service, ultimately leading to better service delivery and governance outcomes in Nigeria. Also, the results of this study will empower civil servants to make independent choices regarding their needs and preferences, thereby fostering a sense of autonomy and responsibility. Furthermore, government and policymakers will be able to gauge its success or failure and make decisions regarding its continuation, modification, or discontinuation. Additionally, other students who may decide to conduct studies in this area will have the opportunity to use this study as available literature that can be subjected to critical review. Invariably, the result of the study contributes immensely to the body of academic knowledge with regard to the impact of monetization as a reform policy on civil servants commitment in Nigeria.

1.7 Scope of the study

The scope of this study is boarded on the impact of monetization as a reform policy on civil servants commitment in Nigeria. Empirically, this study will determine whether monetization as a reform policy is effectively implemented in the Nigerian civil service, the level of employees acceptability of monetization as a reform policy in the Nigerian civil service, the impact of monetization as a reform policy on employees performance in the Nigerian civil service and identify the factors affecting the effective implementation of monetization as a reform policy in the Nigerian civil service.

Geographically, the study will be delimited to staff in the Nigerian civil service, Lagos state, Nigeria. 

1.8 Limitation of the study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. In addition, there was the element of researcher bias. Here, the researcher possessed some biases that may have been reflected in the way the data was collected, the type of people interviewed or sampled, and how the data gathered was interpreted thereafter. The potential for all this to influence the findings and conclusions could not be downplayed. 

More so, the findings of this study are limited to the sample population in the study area, hence they may not be suitable for use in comparison to other schools, local governments, states, and other countries in the world.

1.9 Definition of Terms

Monetization: is the process of converting non-monetary benefits, such as healthcare plans, housing allowances, or transportation subsidies, into cash equivalents.

Performance: is the level of individual’s achievement that comes only after effort has been exerted. It depends not only on the amount of effort exerted, but also on the individual’s abilities and role perceptions (Hellriegel and Slocum, 2019). 

Policy: A plan of action agreed or chosen by a political party, a business, etc. (Hornby, 2018)

Civil servants: individuals working in government agencies and departments.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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