The Implementation of Civil Service Reforms in Ethiopia: The Promise for Civil Service De-Politicization of Tigray National Regional State

Gebre Miruts, Melesse Asfaw


The origin of the ‘modern’ civil service in Ethiopia dates back to the Menelik II Era 1907. Yet, it was few years after the downfall of the military government that the civil service system was drastically transformed. The current Ethiopian government has conducted a continuous reform since the early 1990s to restructure the civil service system with the intention of instituting multi-party democracy and market driven economy. It was with this intention that autonomous civil service institutions were established and the civil servant was begun to serve with merit principles. It is believed that successful merit based Human Resource Management (HRM) is the cornerstone in building government institutions to implement public policies and strategies, which in turn can have a direct impact on the development performance of the country. However, some empirical studies indicate that the promise to have a neutral policy implementer civil service is inhibited by politicization of the civil service among other things. Therefore, the objective of this article was to examine the promise for practicingcivil service de-politicization during the implementation of the Civil Service Reform (CSR) in Tigray. To describe the level of de-politicization in practice based on the promised merit principles, relevant data was collected both from primary and secondary sources. Survey instrument was used to collect primary source data. The researcher utilizes Chi-square to analyze the data and identify the factors that impede de-politicization of the civil service. The research found out that regardless of the institutional framework in place, the promise to make the civil service a neutral policy implementer in Tigray region was highly inhibited by unnecessary political interference, poor separation of power, poor accountability system, ill networking in the civil service and poor over sighting from above.

Key Words: Civil Service Reforms, De-Politicization, Transformation

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ISSN (Paper)2224-607X ISSN (Online)2225-0565

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