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PS Retreat Improve Transparency, Accountability, A-G Tells Permanent Secretaries

The Acting Prime Minister, Attorney-General and Minister for Civil Service, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, laid out Government’s expectations for Permanent Secretaries in improving transparency and accountability within the Fijian Civil Service. He
24 Sep 2017 11:23
PS Retreat Improve Transparency, Accountability, A-G Tells Permanent Secretaries
The Acting Prime Minister, Attorney-General and Minister for Civil Service Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, with Permanent Secretaries and officials at the Permanent Secretaries Retreat in Nadi on September 23, 2017. Photo: DEPTFO News

The Acting Prime Minister, Attorney-General and Minister for Civil Service, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, laid out Government’s expectations for Permanent Secretaries in improving transparency and accountability within the Fijian Civil Service.

He also assured the full commitment of the Civil Service Reform Management Unit to work closely with all Permanent Secretaries to carry out Government’s civil service reform agenda.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum was addressing the Permanent Secretaries at their retreat yesterday in Nadi.

The Permanent Secretaries Retreat is organised annually by the Public Service Commission to foster greater inter-Ministry cooperation and discuss strategies to improve Government services available to the public.

The theme of the 2017 retreat is, “Transformational Leadership – implementing change to achieve high performance and sustainable results”.

In his remarks, the Attorney-General raised a number of concerns brought to his attention during the nationwide roadshows that are currently underway to explain Government’s civil service reform agenda to Fijian civil servants.

He specifically pointed to several complaints regarding the transparency and efficiency of human resources departments, which he said were causing anxiety and feelings of insecurity among civil servants.

“Our Permanent Secretaries lead the way in translating the programmes and policies of this Government into better services and better outcomes for every Fijian,” Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said.

“Our PSs need to assume very hands-on roles and not only oversee the day-to-day running of their ministries, but also the delivery of services to the Fijian people.

“They need to be down in the trenches, and see for themselves the reality that civil servants experience on the ground so that they can apply their expertise directly to the issues faced by civil servants within their ministries and to the issues faced by ordinary Fijians.”

He also emphasised the need for Permanent Secretaries to consider the human side of ministry administration and for all civil servants to show compassion and empathy when serving ordinary Fijians.

Assuming greater responsbility

He also spoke on the importance of PSs assuming greater responsibility for any administrative issues within their respective ministries.

“The administrative staff of every ministry – particularly within our HR departments – need to view civil servants as their clients who they work to support.

“And by extension, our civil servants need to view ordinary Fijians as their own clients as well, and serve them to the best of their ability. That culture of service and that commitment to excellence start at the top with our PSs; they need to lead by example and set the tone for service-delivery.

“When our ministries support our civil servants with efficient and accountable management, and when our civil servants can focus entirely on their service to Fiji, the biggest beneficiary will be the Fijian people,” he said.

The retreat was opened on Friday and concludes today.

Feedback:  jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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