This paper examines the nexus between low wages and corruption in the Nigerian civil service. Methodologically, the paper adopted the survey research design. The unit of analysis of this study is the civil servant. The population of this study was drawn from the civil servants in Sokoto State totaling twenty-nine thousand five hundred and eighty-three (29,583). The paper anchored on “clash of morality theory” which argued that corruption exist in the civil service as a result of cultural values where people considered as not corrupt acts even when such behaviour violates some formal standards or rules set down by the state for public officials. The paper argued that corruption in the civil service is a product of low wages which result to poverty, poor health care, and worsening educational attainment. The study found that there is a statistically significant relationship between income per month and the rate of corruption, and that the higher the income, the lower the level of corruption in the state ministries. The paper concludes that low wages have a significant negative impact on the level of corruption in the Sokoto state civil service because it was found that civil servants at the bottom of the salary scale are the most corrupt, and that the rate of corruption decreases as they move up the salary scale, implying that the lower the wages, the higher the level of corruption, and vice versa.
Keywords: Bureaucratic corruption, Public funds, Efficiency, Productivity, Patronage.
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