Discipline In The Public Service In Nigeria (a Case Study Of Ministry Of Justice, Enugu State)

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The topic of this study was discipline in the public service of Enugu, state. (A Case study of ministry of Justice, Enugu). The study made use of both primary and secondary sources of data. The questionnaire was developed based on the four research questions. The population of the study was 307 (Three hundred and Seven) staff of both ministry of Justice and civil service commission, Enugu. The sample size was 174 (one hundred and seventy – four). The sample technique used was stratified random sampling. The instrument used for gathering data for the study was questionnaire which was structured. The instrument was tagged discipline in the public service descriptive questionnaire (DPSD). The validity of the instrument was tested using pilot test techniques. The inability of the instrument was also tested using test retest technique. The simple, was statistical techniques of frequency and percentages were used in this study. Some findings were made and they include: That discipline affect every performance of Civil servants in the ministry of Justice Enugu, that poor motivation of workers in the  ministry was among those things affecting discipline in the ministry. That good leadership was established to be one of the way to maintain discipline in the ministry and that training and retraining of staff of the ministry were the suggested measures to be taken to ensure staff improved performance. The recommendations are that the ministry should endeavour to create environment whereby her employer would perform the duties with best indulgence in acts of discipline, that the staff of the ministry need to be motivated, that good leaders should be placed in position of trust to ensure that rules and regulations guiding the service are strictly followed and that adequate machinery should be introduced towards training of retaining and all staff of the ministry. A conclusion was drawn to the effect that every effort has to be made to ensure that discipline is maintained for growth of service in Enugu state. 










Title page         -       -       -       -       -       -       -       -       i

Approval page -       -       -       -       -       -       -       -       ii

Dedication       -       -       -       -       -       -       -       -       iii

Acknowledgement    -       -       -       -       -       -       -       iv

Abstract   -       -       -       -       -       -       -       -       -       v

Table of contents     -       -       -       -       -       -       -       vii



INTRODUCTION   -      -      -      -      -      -      -      1

1.1      Background and the need for the study        -       1

1.2      Statement of the problem       -       -       -       -       4

1.3      Objectives of the study   -       -       -       -       -       6

1.4      Research question -       -       -       -       -       -       7

1.5      Significant of the study -       -       -       -       -       8

1.6      Scope of the study -       -       -       -       -       -       8

1.7      Limitations of the study -       -       -       -       -       9

1.8      Definition of terms/acronyms        -       -       -       10


REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE       -      -      -      12

2.1      Conceptual meaning of discipline -       -       -       12

2.2      The civil services and discipline     -       -       -       17

2.3      General inefficiency        -       -       -       -       -       18

2.4      Serious misconduct        -       -       -       -       -       20

2.5      Aims and objectives of discipline    -       -       -       22

2.6      Causes of indiscipline among employees       -       23

2.7      Principles of disciplinary action      -       -       -       31

2.8      System of rules       -       -       -       -       -       -       37

2.9      Types of organizational discipline  -       -       -       39




3.1      Sources of data       -       -       -       -       -       -       47

3.2      Population of the study -       -       -       -       -       50

3.3      Data collection        -       -       -       -       -       -       51

3.4      Sample selection for the study       -       -       -       53

3.5      Sampling technique        -       -       -       -       -       56

3.6      Validity of the instrument      -       -       -       -       57

3.7      Reliability of the instrument  -       -       -       -       60

3.8      Method of data presentation and analysis     -       62


4.0      PRESENTATION, ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION OF DATA -       -        -       -       -       -       -       -       64


5.1      Summary findings  -       -       -       -       -       -       72

5.2      Conclusion      -       -       -       -       -       -       -       74

5.3      Recommendations -       -       -       -       -       -       75

Bibliography   -       -       -       -       -       -       -       78

Questionnaires       -       -       -       -       -       -       83

References      -       -       -       -       -       -       -       91




With the emergence of modern state and development of the parliamentary system of government, the civil service or public service has evolve as the bed-rock of the executive arm of government. Its main task has been the implementation or execution of government policies and programmes.

In addition, it is also responsible for the management of the machinery of government and carrying out daily duties that public administration demands. The public service administration is made up of ministries or parastatals or extra-ministerial departments.

There has been an impairment of discipline in the public service that the traditional role of policy implementation has been affected adversely. The civil service commission which is the body responsible for the effective maintenance of discipline hardly can perform this task these days. (Adabayo, 1994: 199(.

According to Ani, (1991: 10), a good number of our public servants believe that the public service belongs to our then colonial masters and as such they throw discipline in the service to the winds. Under such condition of indiscipline, productivity in the service in adversely affected.

In the words of Ciroms, (1985: 5) the high rate of cases of indiscipline in the service has rendered the public service an adhoc affair instead of a permanent future of our modern government and administration.

The rules and regulations are given various interpretation to suit certain perceptions and to achieve selfish motives.

Adebayo, (1994: 180) believes that the high degree of indiscipline in the public service had give rise to (god-fatherism) nepotism, favouritism and inefficiency in the service. He went further to trace the cause to the attitude of our political leadership.

The views of Adebayo have gone to give credence to the fact that even public servants themselves no longer trust their colloquies. Appointments, promotions and even benefits have been offered to under public servants against the laid down civil service rules.

Worse still the public themselves (the tax payers) no longer have confidence on the civil servants and the necessary co-operation the public would have offered has been withdrawn. The net effect is that entire system is suffering and even getting to a total collapse.




The civil service has remained the bed-rock of modern government for the realization of goals and objectives in order words, it has remained as a very veritable instrument to sell government programmes to the public and to achieve concrete result in order to improve on the lives or welfare of the populace. Unfortunately the public service has been bedeviled with misconduct.

For an illustration the present day public servants have been guilty of dishonesty, drunkenness during official hours, false claim against government, falsification or suppression or cards, loitering, engaging in trade or business without authority, to mention but a few. (Monoh 1988: 40).

Adebayo, (1994: 168), admitted that indiscipline in the service had given room for inefficiency among the public servants. He blamed both government and the public servants themselves for this disease which had eaten deep into the fabrics of the public service in Nigeria.

Again, indiscipline in the public service has been used as major reasons to indict various government in our country. Indeed, it has been responsible for the poor economy of our nation. For instance, the inflation of contract award by the civil servants, embezzlement of public fund, civil servants, engage in political activities, they even go to the extent of disclosing unofficial information and so on and so forth (Nnawuba, 1996: 15).

It is point of fact that the civil service has a great role to play in the lives of both of the greatest problems impediments to the smooth administration of service is indiscipline. The researchers have therefore been compelled to carry out a study on discipline in the  public service – a case study of ministry of Justice, Enugu.

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Discipline In The Public Service In Nigeria