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The Accidental Public Servant Paperback – February 5, 2013

4.8 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Nasir El-Rufai is a prominent Nigerian leader who in the past served as the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja as well as Director General of the Bureau of Public Enterprises. As a prolific opinion columnist and public policy advocate, El-Rufai has become well known as one of the country's most outspoken voices on issues of governance, leadership, transparency, and social justice. El-Rufai studied at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria, University of London, Harvard Business School, Arthur D. Little School of Management in Massachusetts, Georgetown University School of Foreign Services in Washington, D.C. and the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He holds a first class honours degree in Quantity Surveying (1980), a Masters Degree in Business Administration (1984), a Postgraduate Diploma in Computer Science (1985), a Bachelor of Laws (2008), Master of Public Administration (2009), and has attended several programs on Privatization and Leadership. In 2005, he was conferred D.Sc (honoris causa) by the University of Abuja, Nigeria. Before entering the public service, El-Rufai ran a successful consulting practice, El-Rufai & Partners, between 1982 and 1998. He also held management positions with two international telecommunications companies, AT&T Network Systems International BV and Motorola, Inc. In October 2001, he was conferred a national honour, OFR (Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic of Nigeria) by the Federal Government of Nigeria. El-Rufai lives in Abuja, Nigeria, and is happily married with children.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 704 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (February 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1481967401
  • ISBN-13: 978-1481967402
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,345,303 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A brief housekeeping issues to frame my review. I read this book from front to back. I don't know the author, but have known of him for years as the head honcho of the Nigerian national privatization agency BPE and of the FCT - Nigeria's new Federal Capital City, Abuja, both critical agencies in the country. I have had some first-hand knowledge of and distant familiarity with some of the most important actors in Nigeria over the last several decades. I am not saying this to claim any special or privileged knowledge or insight, but to say, I have some pretty good understanding of Nigeria and many of its actors, so I am coming to this book as a fairly informed reader of the environment and of some of the actors, therefore in a position to parse what the author is saying, and he is right on the money in this book.

Even for me and I venture say for everyone, but a miniscule of Nigerians and others, this book contains several profound revelations and insights of the inner workings of the Nigerian state.

Want understand Nigeria? Well, then, simply put, this book is "the gold standard" blueprint available anywhere to understanding Nigeria, for both Nigerians and others. It is by far the most intimate, the most comprehensive, fair-minded, boot-on-the-ground book ever written on the psychology behind the Nigerian state, from the beginning to now and way into the future. This is first rate mosaic of information written by the most level-headed actor and observer of Nigeria I know.

The book covers politics, corruption, rule of law, leadership, incompetence, waste, tribal, regional and religious loyalties and examples of valiant efforts to rise above it all.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Just the first few pages of the book and I can't stop. The book starts hard....tough! The story of the Nigerian government from a perspective inside of government is sure to be hot; well, I think this one is explosive! I am reading and relating with what is going on now in the Nigerian government and whoa....!!!!

I need the kindle edition to be on sale and I need it NOW!!
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Format: Kindle Edition
Finally i have finished reading the Accidental Public Servant. I have read countless commentaries on this fantastic book by El Rufai. Many have postulated reasons why he must have written this book, mostly linking this to his rumored presidential ambition. He certainly has a constitutional right, and in my opinion, eminently qualified to be the President (I am sure we will have better luck with him!!!). But as usual, here we go again chasing shadows instead of substance. Here we go falling for the age long tactics of the Nigerian elites, represented by all tribes and religion, causing divisions amongst us while they steal us blind. The plain truth is that "there are only two types of people in Nigeria....good people and bad people, period" (agreeing with and quoting El Rufai).

One striking truth in this book that I am sure most will agree with is that we have through our apathy left the political space predominantly to rogues, charlatans, opportunist, dishonorable men and women who don't posses the zeal, capability, and capacity to take advantage of the moment for the advancement of Nigeria. This we must change, and as El Rufai has demonstrated, this will take sacrifice stepping out of our present comfort, and the courage to stand, and stand straight and firm for that matter, against the barrage of distractions, both from detractors and praise singers, and the onslaught from the enemies of our progress.

What I have read is a honest, albeit bold, recollection of events in our polity from a man who came, saw, performed and now sharing valuable experiences to deepen our democracy. Anyone who has a contrary or opposing recollection of events should please take up the challenge and enlighten the public through their own publication, we definitely need more books like this.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Accidental Public Servant (TAPS) is the most refreshing and long overdue insight to the dynamics of power relations in Nigeria's political-economy. With El-Rufai's stint at the highest level of governance in Nigeria, he instilled a rigid ethical and professional conduct in his duties and obligation to the executive government and the nation. TAPS is a page turner which I've found difficult to put down. A highly recommended reading for every student of Nigerian and African political studies.
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Immediately I started reading this book I couldn't stop. I wanted to read one more page, one more chapter - Very interesting and captivating. el-Rufai has done a good job in cataloging what transpired during his time in Govt., the intricacies of governance in Nigeria and the attendant corruption. This book is also good for individuals that plan to go into politics or governance. There are lots of lessons and insights that can help in preparing for a position in government. I however found some imbalance in the book as it relates to the accounts involving Atiku Abubakar (the then VP of Nigeria). Atiku was strongly painted as a corrupt politician while the likes of Obasanjo received a rather soft treatment by the author. On the organization of the book, there were a lot of end notes at the back of the book which meant flipping back and forth between the main pages and the rear. It would have been an easier read if the end notes were printed as a footnote on the main page it appeared for easy reference. Overall, a good work product by Nasir worthy of emulation by other actors on the Nigerian political stage. Kudos.
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