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New public management reforms in Nigerian democratic governance: issues and challenges

Theophilus Olumuyiwa Agboola
Kazeem Oyedele Lamidi


The paper examined the changes in public sector reforms in Nigeria over the last several decades. Nigeria has embraced variants of the philosophy of administration broadly called “New Public Management” (NPM) in an effort to improve administrative efficiency and the provision of public services The politicisation of the public service has been a subject of author interest. This paper brings concepts and ideas from around the world about the need for and ways of achieving more responsive and accountable new public management within the framework of democratic governance. The paper adopts a content analysis method through the use of secondary data. The findings of the paper revealed that the adoption of NPM has improved public service in the delivery of social service to the citizens. It also reduced corruption in the public service through the implementation of e-government and SERVICOM initiatives to the citizens. The paper concluded that NPM reforms had led to the emergence of a truly reprofessionalised Nigerian public service in the fourth democratic governance.

Keywords: Democracy, governance, new public management, accountability, reform