Gov Sanwo-Olu inaugurates joint revenue committee on tax administration

Gov Sanwo-Olu (m) with the new Perm-Secs

A rigorous screening process held for more than 400 top administrators in the Lagos State civil service has culminated in the appointment of 18 new Permanent Secretaries who will be driving the development blueprint of the State Government.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Friday, swore in the successful candidates and assigned portfolios to them at a programme that held in the Banquet Hall of the State House, Alausa, Ikeja.

The governor also inaugurated Lagos State Joint Revenue Committee (SJRC), which will implement the decisions of Joint Tax Board and harmonise tax administration in the state. The Committee is headed by chairman of the Lagos Internal Revenue Service (LIRS), Mr. Ayo Subair.

The competitive procedure of appointing the Permanent Secretaries set a new template for merit in the filling of the position, according to a press statement signed by the governor's chief press secretary, Gboyega Akosile

The state governor from the press statement, was said to have set up a screening committee, comprising members of the State’s cabinet and the Office of the Head of Service, which assessed the candidates and gave recommendations in a development that would mark a departure from the old procedure where a governor would single-handedly pick unmerited civil servants in higher cadres.

The screening committee, chaired by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Hon. Tokunbo Wahab, recommended the appointment of the 18 successful civil servants for the Permanent Secretary positions out of 65 shortlisted after assessment.

Sanwo-Olu described the Permanent Secretary position as “the engine room” of the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA), saying their roles as administrators remained strategic to the success of any administration.

The screening process, the governor said, was introduced to achieve a merit-based appointment by giving all eligible candidates an equal opportunity to vie for the position based on their knowledge, capacity, competence, and experience.

He said: “The role of Permanent Secretaries is crucial to the success of any administration. As drivers of the government’s development agenda in the Ministries, Departments and Agencies, we have no choice but to painstakingly embark on a merit-based exercise and appoint only permanent secretaries who share our vision, mission and drive.

“Given our government’s commitment to excellent service delivery, we decided to put in place this competitive screening process for the emergence of new Permanent Secretaries.

"I, therefore, congratulate the 18 newly sworn-in Permanent Secretaries and commend your contributions to the progress of the Lagos, especially the delivery of excellent Public Service. Your appointment is well-deserved and it is purely merit-based.”

The governor said he personally followed the task of the selecting the new permanent secretaries based on his belief that there must be right synergy between members of the Executive and civil service to successfully deliver on the Government’s mandate to the people.

Before the appointees were finally picked, Sanwo-Olu had one-on-one interactions with the 65 shortlisted candidates presented to him for consideration by the screening committee, the press statement added.

He therefore charged them to justify their appointments by collaborating with his administration to deliver outstanding service to the people, among other things.

In an acceptance speech on behalf of the appointees, Dr. Mustafa Ibrahim Akinwunmi, Permanent Secretary of Primary Healthcare Board, noted that the new Permanent Secretaries were chosen among the best. He thanked the governor for the opportunity.

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