Maria Oyedeji, Lwarence O. Odeh


The public service plays an indispensable role in good governance and effective service delivery.  The dealings and decisions of government are influenced and implemented by the public servants hence the need for them to exhibit high level of proficiency, skill, competence, and efficiency through complete adherence to ethical standards in the performance of their duties and in services to be delivered. This paper focuses on ethical standards in a fragile administrative system where the institutions are not delivering on their objectives. The paper is hinged on the Ecological theory of administrative weakness and secondary source of data collection such as textbooks, journal articles, relevant government publications and internet materials were utilized.  The paper revealed that, with high level ethical standards, the Nigerian public servants would be committed to performing its duties competently, upholding the ethics of their profession and displaying a high level of probity, accountability, integrity, openness, selflessness, objectivity and efficiency in service delivery. It also revealed that, environmental factors such as political, economic and societal norms and values like the increasing level of poverty and unemployment, adulation of material wealth among others, militate against the adherence to ethical standards in the Nigerian public service.  This paper therefore recommends among others, the need for a nation-wide re-orientation, change of attitudes and change in the societal value system to embrace the values of honesty, integrity, contentment, accountability and hard work. Ethics and positive societal values should be taught more vigorously at all levels of education in the country from the primary schools to tertiary institutions of learning.


Ethical standards, Public Service, Fragility, Service Delivery.

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