The National, Wednesday 5th June 2013
CENTRAL provincial administrator Gei Raga has called on key sector heads to improve systems and processes for the sake of providing better public service.
He told the Southern region workshop in Alotau last week that it was all about teamwork.
He told the National Economic and Fiscal Commission’s (NEFC) Elizabeth Babate in an interview: “We make sure the budget is driven by annual activity plans because with limited internal revenue, we always work within our budget and we aim to spend on the minimum priority activities (MPAs).
“Even if the budget is given late, you still have support from internal revenue.”
In reference to NEFC’s analysis showing how provinces used their internal revenue on basic services, Raga said last year Central recorded K11 million and this year it increased to K13 million of which three quarters came from the IRC.
Raga said Central expected some revenue to come from NCD which was supposed to give the province 10% of what it raised in GST collection, but NCD had provided less.
“This should enable us to improve our service delivery,” he said.
“There is a current court decision pending on this matter.”
On the issue of capacity, Raga said: “Even if the national Government gives us more money, you need more capacity to deliver at district and the local level government.
“In order to reflect on the theme of the workshop ‘Taking stock and reflecting on the past lessons’, given our present capacity to spend, if we prioritise our budget at the provincial level, it will reflect on the spending on the minimum priority activities which would have been fully implemented anyway.”
Another issue identified was the reporting system at the provincial administration
Raga highlighted that Central administration had put in effort to align its budget with the annual activity plans so that sector managers could report key activities.
“We may not fully achieve what we want to do, but we are getting there,” he said
Commending the commitment of his key sector managers and technical advisers, he said his message to other provinces was to use provincial exchanges or visits to learn about good budgeting practice to improve reporting.