This paper seeks to assess the ethical environment within which the public service in Nigeria has operated since independence through a focus on accountability and control measures specifically designed to guard against abuse and misuse of bureaucratic power. It argues that these measures have failed to provide the service with the necessary ethical environment in the post-independence period due to deliberate frustration by civil servants and the government hence resulting in unethical conducts and unbridled corruption in the public bureaucracy.
Key words: Ethics, accountability, Nigeria, bureaucracy.
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