26 September 2023

NIGERIA: PS head decries poor public sector health

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Nigeria’s Public Service chief has decried the rising toll of deaths and illness among Federal Public Servants.

Speaking at the opening of a new Wellness Centre for Government workers, Folashade Yemi-Esan said there was a need for everyone in the bureaucracy to seek useful, adequate and accurate information on common health conditions and how to prevent or successfully manage them.

“The need to comprehensively pay attention to our health status is more crucial, especially due to the sedentary nature of our jobs as Civil Servants, coupled with the tendency to be solely committed to the demands of the office and neglecting one’s physical wellbeing,” Dr (pictured) Yemi-Esan said.

She said the Federal Civil Service Strategy and Implementation Plan, 2021-25 underscored the value Government placed on the lives and wellbeing of Public Servants “not only as citizens, but as a privileged section of the population saddled with the responsibility of driving development in Nigeria through policy formulation and implementation”.

“This is also in line with our drive towards a new Civil Service of our dreams,” Dr Yemi-Esan said.

Noting that the International Labor Organisation estimated there were 160 million victims of work-related illnesses recorded around the world annually, she said a good number of the ailments were preventable through the right application of knowledge and attitude to work and health.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian Government has begun building 116 housing units for Public Servants working in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The two-bedroom semi-detached bungalows at Gwagwalada are expected to ease a chronic shortage of accommodation for Government workers in the FCT.

Speaking at the ground-breaking ceremony, Dr Yemi-Esan said while she appreciated the Ministry of Works and Housing for providing the five hectares of land for the project, she hoped for more houses for Public Servants soon.

In response, Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fasola said the allocation of more land was under active consideration.

Abuja, 22 January 2023

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