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1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
One thing that makes a well-planned human organization different from an unplanned one is the prevalence of order and sanity. It is this order and sanity that makes planned organization very distinctive and capable of achieving the objectives for their establishment. Sometimes this order and sanity are by-products of laid down rules or sometimes borne out of the fear of the occurrence of unpleasant consequences, should one go contrary to accepted standards and norms. This is why in social systems or organizations like schools, the fear of failing an examination compels a student to study hard. In a family, the fear of being manhandled or mistreated by parents makes a child to behave well; and in an organization such as the public services, the fear of being dismissed from the system makes it imperative for an employees or worker to abide by the rules and regulations of the public services. And, the only weapon through which all those enamoured could be feasible both in school, family or the civil services, in through the concepts of control and discipline.
An effective control and discipline are one, which can help to achieve organization objectives in the most cost effective manner. There has been a growing conception that public enterprises have been performing so much below expectation that the goals and objectives for which they were established are no longer being attained or realized. Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) is not left out of this accusation of organizational Malady.
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 was the body responsible for the effective maintenance of control and discipline hardly can perform this task these days (Adebayo, 1994).
Ani (1991), observes that a good number of our public servants believe that the public service belongs to our then colonial master, and as such they throw control and discipline in the service to the winds. Under such condition of indiscipline, productivity in the service of Enugu State University of Science and Technology is adversely affected.
Certain organizational factors such as control and discipline have been found by management experts and scholars to be a veritable instruments for addressing this problem of ineffective performance in the public bureaucracies. The Nigeria civil service is one of the organizations that have witnessed a variety of demeanors from the employees of the civil service units. Some of the offences that are common in the civil service include; unexcused absence, leaving without permission, dishonesty, deception of fraud, willful damage of property/ materials, fighting, insubordination, falsifying of records and so many others.
Johnson (1996:324), maintained that “every employer must have means to remove those who do not contribute to its mission”. If this is the case, the researcher is of the view that the civil service in the present time is experiencing terrible misdemeanor from its employees to the extent that the disciplinary methods or procedures seem to have no effect on them. If it has, why does the civil service have cases of frauds, truancy, absenteeism, lateness, and other general misconducts? Does it mean that control and discipline have no more relevance to the effective operation of the civil services? If it has, what effects have them on the system in the contemporary Nigeria society?
It is as a result of the above analogy and in response to the questions posed that this study examined the subject mather “staff control and discipline in the University system in Nigeria using Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) as a case study.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The Enugu State University of Science and Technology has remained the bed-rock of the country for the realization of goals and objectives in other words, it has remained as a veritable instrument to educate the public and to achieve concrete result in order to improve on the lives or welfare of the populace. But today, a dramatic and disappointing situation has taken over the former moral filled minds of workers. The contemporary public sector organization, including ESUT is replete with stories and cases of fraudulent practices, such as lateness to duty or work, absenteeism, insubordination, inefficiency absent without official leave, disobedience, falsification of records, disclosure of classified information and a myriad of other case. These situations have made the disciplinary measures or procedures embedded in the official document established in the public sector to check the occurrences of the aforementioned abnormal attitude look like a toothless bulldog.
Adebayo (1994: 99) admitted that lack of control and discipline in the service had given room for inefficiency among 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. Nnawuba (1996) refer to control as discipline as been responsible for the poor economy of our nation. For instance, the inflation of contract award by the public servants, embezzlement of public fund, civil servants engagement in political activities and so on and so forth.
The researcher has therefore been compelled to carry out a study on staff control and discipline in Nigerian University system using Enugu
State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) as a study.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
There is no doubt whatsoever that in any organization where control and disciplinary mechanism are not in place, the end result is inefficiency and low productivity in the performance of workers. Consequently, the use of control and discipline in any organization definitely should act as a panacea to such problems.
Therefore, the objectives of this study are to:
i) Identify the disciplinary methods/procedures that exist in the Enugu
State University of science and Technology (ESUT).
ii) Find out the relationship between discipline and efficiency in the performance of workers in Enugu State University Science and Technology.
iii) Prefer suggestions towards enhancing workers performance in the public sector.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study is on the issue “Staff control and discipline in the
University system in Nigeria using Enugu State University of Science and Technology as a case study”. The study is therefore, very significant because it will enable the researcher highlight on the concepts control and discipline and its relevance in organizations. And this will be of immense benefit to the superiors in the Nigeria public, since the ability to apply this will help them to stem the tide of inefficiency and low performance in this sector.
This study will be of great benefit to the workers in the public service as the study will unveil some of the disciplinary methods and procedures and their effects on workers. Therefore, workers will be opportuned to have insight and take necessary correction for improve performance in the public service.
Private sector organizations would benefit from this study because the findings and subsequent recommendations by the researcher will make them learn more about control and discipline and its impact on workers performance and this will enable them know how to apply them in their sector.
This study would be significant to the researcher as it would serve as an achievement in the academic circles.
Finally, this study saves as another contribution to the academic development to the concept control and discipline, and for this reasons will be of immense benefit to students. They will find this study very useful since the information they will gather, would assist them especially those who may wish to carry out further research on the subject matter in future.
1.5 SCOPE AND LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
This study is a case study research with Enugu State University of
Science and Technology (ESUT). In the same way all the staff of the University participated. The research was a descriptive analysis. Being a case study research, the generalizability of the study covered the samples used in the study as the target population from where the sample was drawn.
A study of this nature cannot be completed successfully without some constraints or limitations being experienced by the researcher. In view of this, one of the limitations as experienced by the researcher was inadequate time. The researcher being a civil servant had to combine his work with carrying out the study.
Another limitation to the study was lack of finance. A study of this nature requires enough fund to enable the researchers make regular visits to the organization selected for the study so as to elicit information on the subject matter under study. But the problems of inadequacy of fund nearly impeded the efforts of the researcher in this direction.
The cooperation of some staff of the university administration used was not encouraging as many of them refused to offer vital co-operation for fear of being held guilty of divulging official secret. Some of these respondents were hesitant to accept and complete the copies of questionnaire administered to them by the researcher.
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