CONFLICT MANAGEMENT IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT SERVICE
This research study is to investigate the conflict management in local government. Service with particular reference to Ojo local government being the local government use as a case study for this work. Conflict management is very crucial in the achievement of each other actually when there are employer over some issues like condition of work or condition of employment. The local government, which is the third tier of the executive arm of government, is established to meet the welfare the local people The ubiquitous presence of conflict can hinder the local government constitutional duties. The activities of various social groups in the local government. If not effectively controlled or managed can be costly in terms performance &,reputation. The instrument used to carryout this study effectively was the questionnaire which was administered to the staff of Ojo local government area total number of one number (100) questionnaire, were administered which the hypotheses using percentage while the hypothesis was tested with he chi–square statistics. The result and funding of the study reveal that conflict management in the local government is the fundamental phenomenon that effect the performance of the local government management its employee.
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The term conflict specifically means breakdown of relationship between parties and this was corroborated by oxford English dictionary definition in which conflict was defined as a serious disagreement, on argument, a struggle, a fight. The history of mankind cannot be devoid of conflict from the primordial age to the era of communal capitalism, feudalism up to the present. A lot of attempts were recorded in capturing various sources of conflict and how it can be effectively managed. In every organization where people of different backgrounds and interest have , to interact in the collective effort towards achieving a common goal, conflict is bound to take place. This is because every member of the organization comes from different places, background and brings to the workplaces his own personal interest, ambition, which he/she earnestly desires to achieve along organizational goals. These individual goals may not necessarily be compatible with that of other members and as a result of this conflict will definitely come up in the organization:
Conflict management may be planned and formal or unplanned and verbal or physical ranging from passive resistance to active aggression. Conflict takes place between individuals and between groups, between distinct organizations or groups within an organization and conflict no doubt is an important element of social interaction and apart from being a “negative ” factor that “tear apart” conflict may contribute in many way to the maintenance of groups and collectivities as well as the cementing of inter personal relations. A conflict is therefore endemic. It is common knowledge that an organization needs peaceful co-existence for survival, which may be threatened by conflict.? Conflict management is very crucial in the achievement of organization goals for proper understanding of each other actually when there are disagreement between the employees and employers over some issues like conditions of employment etc. Karl Marx and some scholars say that industrialization is a mixed blessing, which has brought prosperity, strike and dispute in industries. It is unthinkable to find any organization without conflict.
The local government, which is the third tier of the Executive arm of government, is established to meet the welfare needs of the local people. Although the various local councils in the country were created in the early 50s to perform localized functions and to bring government closer to the people, the purpose of local government is essentially to promote democracy at the grassroots level and ensure service delivery. A local government system may be recognized as either a single – tier or multi-tier local government. It is single tier if it performs all the functions assigned to a local government within its area of jurisdiction and it is multi tier, if two or more local councils share responsibility for local services within a given local territory. The management structure of local government takes the form of mayoral or mayor – council model. The mayor (chairman) is a weak mayor, as he does not have the power to appoint, remove and supervise the entire administrative staff. The ubiquitous presence of conflict can hinder the local government in discharge of its constitutional duties. The activities of various social groups in the local government if not effectively controlled or managed can be costly in terms performance and reputation. In fact any organization without conflict is as good as dead. Conflict can only be dysfunctional or harmful where there is no machinery that is put growth of the organization. Conflict management expressed in what ever form pose cost to all industrial relations actors, certain machinery have to put in place for emerged overtime and new approaches are being worked out to reduce the effect of conflict in both public and organized private sector in order to prevent the development of all forms of costly expression of industrial discontents.
1.2 BRIEF HISTORY OF OJO LOCAL GOVERNMENT
Ojo local government was carved out of Badagry local government in May, 1989. Until October I, 1996, when two other local governments namely Amuwo – Odofin and AjeromiIfelodun local governments were created, it was the most population of 1.01m by the 1991 national population census provisional figure. With the creation of Amuwo-Odofin and Ajeromi/Ifelodum local governments, there were boundary adjustments. As at now, the local government shares boundaries with Badagry local government at Oto with the Ologe lagoon forming a natural boundary on its southwest flask. It is bounded in the East by Amuwo-Odofin local government, in the North by Alimosho local government and in the south by the lagoon. Ojo houses the Alaba International Market, which is the largest electronics, electrical parts, and allied material market in the West Africa Sub-Region. Currently, Ojo local government Area is divided into 11 Electoral Wards, which are represented by councilors under the leadership of Apostle Solomon Ajibola Akin- Aina as Executive chairman.
Local Government Administration
Local government in the federation over the year have gone through various reforms, particularly during the regime of Generals Ibraham Babangida and Sani Abacha when local governments had their political functionaries either elected or appointed and enjoyed autonomy. The present political functionaries at the local government level were elected on April, 2003 on party basis. However, the elected functionaries assumed office on June 1, 2003 having been sworn-in by the Executive governor of Lagos state, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
The 1999 constitution, which is the operational statue book for the fourth republic, put the control of local government administration under the state government, this led o he passing of bill on local government into law on October 4, 1999 in Lagos state. The law provided for a total separation of the executive and legislative powers at the local government level. ‘ Thus empowering the chairmen to appoint members of their executive committee i.e. the supervisors and the secretary to the local government, while the elected constitute the legislative arm.
The Executive Arm
At the top of the Executive Arm is the chairman of the local government who is the chief Executive and accounting office. Other members are the Vice-chairman, supervisors and secretary to the local government as appointed by the chairman and top officers in the service of the local government. The supervisors are the political heard of department. The executive arm is largely responsible for policy formulation, control of finances and award of contracts, among other.
The Legislative Arm
The legislative arm comprises the elected councilors with a leader and the Deputy elected from among he councilors. The legislative arm also has a council clerk who takes care of the proceeding of the council and its general administration. The leader presides over the council meetings. The legislative council among other function debates amends and approves and advises the chairman when necessary.
1.3 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Conflict as expressed in strike and other from industrial action including peaceful negotiation seem to be more evident and prevalent in unionized organization. Workers do not have recognition of unionized organization. In non-unionized organization workers do not have recognition of common front to protect collective interest, and as a consequence of the absence of consensus opinion, management is expected to be with a barrage of individual workers demand, which naturally would be very difficult, is manage.
The situation which is expected to be more conflict prone is paradoxically more peaceful even when conflict in all ramification is considered in unionized organization trade union support for workers in exercise of their power arising from group dynamic has been deplored by employers as being dysfunctional is an ideal peaceful industrial environment employers believe that minor dispute which would have been settled in- house are blown out of proportion by unions, and the notion of unions insistence on cost involving elaborate grievance procedure is concern to employers.
1.4 PURPOSE OF STUDY
The purpose of this study is to examine in clear terms the specific cause of conflict in a local government service. It would attempt to establish modern management techniques of conflict management. The study will proffer an ‘over view of labour management relations in an organization and examine having identified the cause of conflict, grievance and dispute, the effectiveness of the machinery set for the resolution of the grievance and dispute which is restricted to the internal and external. (Statutory) machinery and collective agreement between the senior staff workers and junior staff workers and their management with a view to making suggestions to improve and or minimize, and if possible eliminate dispute from labour management interaction in an organization.
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY
This study is expected to establish specific cause of conflict in a local government service and how it effect can be mitigated. It would give manager of the organization insight on the forms of conflict in their organization and enhance their ability to manage such conflict. The employee of local government and tend to benefit from the research most especially Ojo Local Government workers because the research would practically establish the benefit of organization harmony thereby ensuring their job security the research would also be beneficial in the area of research exercise for would be researcher. The study will also help to fashion out an understanding of the causes, nature and resolution of the conflict.
1.6 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The study will attempt to address the following questions:
i. Can structural problem lead to conflict?
ii. Can inter-government relationship generate conflict?
iii. Does political and bureaucratic corruption result to conflict?
iv. Have you ever had cause to protect over issues :concerning wages and salaries?
v. Can dissatisfaction as to working environment and condition lead to conflict?
vi. Are you aware of any internal machinery for settling dispute in the organization?
1.7 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
i. Ho: There is no relationship between conflict and its management in a Local government service.
HI: There is a relationship between conflict and its management in a Local government services.
ii. Ho: There is no cordial working relationship between management and employees that enhances productivity.
HI: There is cordial working relationship between management and employees that enhances productivity.
iii. Ho: Effective conflict resolution does enhances employee’s productivity.,
HI: Effective conflict resolution enhances employee’s productivity.
iv. HI: Cordial working relationship between management and employees enhance productivity.
Ho: There is no need for modern management techniques in the operation of local government service for high productivity to be ensured.
HI: There is need for modern management techniques in the operation of local government service for high productivity to be ensured.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
CONFLICT: This is defined as serious disagreement, an argument, a struggle, a fight.
MANAGEMENT: This is defined as the art of getting things done through people.
LOCAL GOVERNMENT: This is defined as the vehicle for dynamic rural development and the third tier of the Executive arm of government.