By Bertha Chirwa
President Dr Lazarus Chakwera says principal secretaries have a huge task of fixing a government system that has been broken.
At an interface meeting with government principal secretaries at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe on Tuesday, Chakwera said principal secretaries are the ones who control the civil service which at the moment needs urgent fixing.
“You are the ones who control the Civil Service, and the fact that the Civil Service is broken and in urgent need of fixing means that the task of fixing it rests on you. My task is to give you direction on what you must focus on and to engage in continuous evaluation of whether you have what it takes to fix a government system as broken as ours”. He said.
Chakwera added that the Principal Secretaries will be subjected to performance appraisals once every quarter as a way of ensuring collaboration between them and his office for the betterment of the country.
“In order to give you the direction you need, i have already had the Secretary to the President and Cabinet communicate to you that you will be required to meet with her on a monthly basis and you will be subjected to performance appraisals once every quarter. The first goal of these measures is to create synergy among you and increase the level of collaboration between you and my office, because ultimately, we must work for Malawians as one team.
The second goal is to ensure that we are on the same page regarding what exactly is broken in the Civil Service and what we must do as a matter of urgency to fix it. The third and final goal is to ensure that there is no single MDA that is motivated by anything else other than excellent service to Malawi and its people, because if anyone in the Civil Service is there for any other reasons, it is your job to change the people or change the people,’ adds Chakwera.
He had since therefore urged them to express challenges and bring forth ideas on how best they can work together with the Office of the President and Cabinet.
“In the spirit of collaboration, I invite your ideas and submissions of what you feel has gone wrong in the Civil Service in the past twenty years in general, what you have found challenging about working with OPC in the past two years in particular, and what you believe are the most helpful tools for fixing both as we go forward into a new chapter.
Through my office at Capital Hill, I am determined to do everything I can to support you and set you up for success, and I am just as determined to not entertain any attitudes or behaviorsfrom the Civil Service that are designed to make us fail,” he said.