President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has launched the new National Public Sector Reform Strategy (NPSRS), to improve the performance – responsiveness and quality of service delivery by the sector.
The NPSRS, to run from 2018 through to 2023, would review and modernise the current structures, systems, processes and internal management functions of the sector, to enable it support government’s development priorities.
President Akufo-Addo said although the public service bequeathed to Ghana after independence had contributed its quota to the nation’s development, Ghanaians, in recent years, had been dissatisfied with the quality of service.
“Whether it is about absenteeism or lateness, incompetence or corruption, the public sector is, today, unhappily, not seen in good light.”
He spoke of various reforms undertaken by successive governments to change things and said the requisite level of performance of the sector had still not been attained.
That was why, he said, his administration had begun the process to the create “a new public service that is fit-for-purpose, which will help guarantee the delivery of high quality services for the Ghanaian people and the private sector”.
President Akufo-Addo said a major goal of the reform was to strengthen the human resource capacity of the public sector to improve its delivery.
To this end, public sector training institutions would be resourced to help develop the skills and knowledge needed to efficiently deliver.
“The process will also enhance the ethical foundation of the public sector and, in addition, introduce change management initiatives to deal with apathy, resistance and reform fatigue, which have been the bane of previous attempts at reform,” he added.
He noted that improved working conditions was key to increasing productivity in the public service, and said there was going to be a systematic review of public sector compensation in its entirety – the institution of a suitable performance-based reward system to help guarantee increased productivity.
“The review will pursue opportunities for upgrading office space, and provide the necessary tools and equipment to improve the work environment within the Service.
Additionally, a central assets and inventory check system to take stock of all physical assets in the public service will be established. Furthermore, a culture of maintenance of public assets and property must be revived and adhered to.”
President Akufo-Addo said attention would be focused on strengthening local government structures and digitization of public sector services and systems.
With the mainstreaming ICT in government agencies, the public sector would go paperless to reduce drastically the interface that currently existed between citizens and public servants in the provision of services.
He vowed to ensure that the reform strategy did not suffer the same fate as the previous ones, saying “matters relating to policy formulation and implementation, monitoring and evaluation, reporting and accountability, have been well factored into this strategy to ensure its smooth take off”.
He urged members of the public service to embrace the reforms, as they l represented an effective means for the creation of a public service that would deliver to the expectation of the people and the private sector.
“An efficient public service will help realise our vision of a self-reliant, prosperous Ghana.
It should serve as the impetus for re-shaping our country and charting a new path of growth and development in freedom, which will help deliver a dignified, prosperous standard of life to the Ghanaian people.”