THE manner of recruiting of public servants by a state agency determines what the total output will be.
When senior public servants are recruited without following proper appointment processes and procedures provided under the relevant laws, or when nepotism comes into play, you can expect to see a downfall in the public service in terms of service delivery.
Senior positions in the Bougainville public service such as the positions of the chief secretary and heads of departments are made by the senior appointment committee whose chairman is the President of the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG).
Questions have been raised in regards to the manner in which senior public servants in Bougainville have been appointed over the last five years.
There has been nepotism and non-compliance in appointments.
This applies to acting appointments as well.
Just recently, during the counting of presidential votes, the senior appointments committee headed by the previous government decided to renew a contract of a head of department in the ABG for another five years when the contract of the incumbent expired.
It is suspicious why the previous government rushed its decision on this particular position when all other senior heads of department positions remained vacant.
If the contract expired, why didn’t the previous government facilitate an acting appointment as all other senior positions?
Why weren’t those positions advertised externally?
Why was the appointment done on qualifications?
If President Ishmael Toroama is serious and committed to deter corruption in the ABG, this is where he should start .
A call is made to the ABG President to review the appointment of this particular position being referred to.
All current acting senior positions should be advertised immediately.
A more neutral or independent human resource entity should be tasked to facilitate the appointments of senior public servants and new members of the senior appointment committee should be sworn in.
Members of the committee should be more neutral and apply merit based appointment based on experience and higher and relevant qualifications.
We need candidates with masters degrees to occupy departmental positions. Secondly a call is made to review the job descriptions of other middle management positions so that only degree holders are considered.
We do not want to see the appointment of grade 12 and diploma candidates occupying middle management positions.
Over the last 10 years, the appointment of many public service positions in the ABG has been executed based on who you know as well as ethnicity.
This has to stop.
A call is now made to Toroama to look into this and correct it if we want to see improvement and better results in the ABG public service.
Bishop Mutii, NCD