Why We Build Capacity Of Retiring Staff – Agric Ministry

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Agric training
The director of special duties, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mrs. Fausat Lawal (fifth from left) flanked by workshop participants during the training programme in Abuja.

The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) has given the rationale behind the entrepreneurship training and empowerment programmes for retiring staff of the ministry.

Speaking during his closing remarks at the presentation of ‘starter’ packs to participants of the third entrepreneurship programme for retiring officers of the ministry today (August 26, 2022) in Abuja, the ministry’s permanent secretary, Dr. Ernest Umakhihe, said the training was meant to aid a smooth transition to retirement for the retiring staff.

“As outlined in the Federal Civil Service Strategy Implementation Plan (FCSSIP), improved welfare and well-being of Federal civil servants is one of the target areas of the current civil service reforms’ initiative. In line with this, the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (HOCSF) has put in place a pre-retirement programme for civil servants to be trained in various agricultural enterprises within the last five years of their career, so that while they are still in service, they can partake in ventures that could help them generate additional income with a smooth transition to retirement and its sustainability,” he said.

Umakhihe added that the event further demonstrates the ministry’s commitment to improving staff welfare and sensitisation of all staff on the need to be involved in agro-allied practices while in service as agriculture is the only window of opportunity available for extra earnings arising from relevant rules and regulations for civil servants in government business.

“This will mitigate the fears of the unknown by those of you about to retire from active service. The birth of this innovation will further develop a roadmap for sustainable livelihood among civil servants and improve effective service delivery and provide you lifetime engagement after civil service. It will also address post-retirement challenges often faced by unskilled retirees, contribute to the nation’s food security, as well as act as extension agents to farmers in your neighbourhoods,” he added.

Represented by the ministry’s director of special duties, Mrs. Fausat Lawal, Umakhihe commended the noble idea and wished that every staff of the ministry would engage in ‘backyard’ agricultural activity, being the only window or opportunity available for extra earnings arising from the constitutional provision for civil servants in government business, poverty reduction and job creation.

Responding on behalf of the trainees, Manguts Yabans thanked the ministry for the training. He said it has prepared staff getting ready to exit the civil service for life after retirement.

He thanked the ministry for the noble initiative, adding that “the sky is the limit” for those getting ready to retire from active service to the government.

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