An incubator for ideas on governance

2013-03-31 10:00

Professionalisation of our public service is an important part of establishing a capable and competent public administration.

With the launch of the National School of Government in October, the public service will train and develop new recruits, and reorientate and educate all currently employed public servants, thus positioning them to lead the implementation of the National Development Plan.

The National Planning Commission’s diagnostic overview points out that many of the problems with public-sector performance have to do with deeply rooted systemic issues, and there is no quick fix substitute for a long-term and strategic approach to enhancing institutional capacity.

Addressing the uneven performance of the public service will therefore not be achieved through multiple new initiatives, but rather through a focused and coordinated approach.

The introduction of the school is one of the measures to institutionalise a culture of efficiency, effectiveness and professionalism.

The school will serve as an incubator for ideas and a catalyst for the modernisation of the public service.

To this end, the school, working in collaboration with similar institutions, will serve as a repository and disseminator of best international experience and practice in public service.

The goal is to have the school as a centre from which public-sector training is coordinated, and curriculum and training standards are directed, in support of service delivery that drives sustainable growth.

The school will ensure that government institutions are functioning with skilled public servants who are committed to the public good and are capable of consistently delivering high-quality services.

Drawing from the experience of those who have served at different levels of government will enrich training and development interventions.

The school will provide in-service and professional development and training to improve competency in the public service.

The programmes delivered by the school will be based on knowledge of the public administration systems, the ethos of governance and the culture of service delivery.

Seasoned, ethical and principled facilitators and instructors who understand the public service will train in the school.

To ensure that new public servants understand the values and ethos of the public service, we have introduced a compulsory induction course for all of them during their first 24 months of employment.

This is central to our programmes to develop a new public service cadre whose only preoccupation is meeting the needs of the people.

A range of in-service training and development programmes will be introduced especially for middle to executive management levels in local, provincial and national departments and public-sector agencies building capabilities to deal with job-specific skills and competency gaps.

The distinctive feature of the school is that it draws its faculty mainly from former and current public servants.

With demonstrable and direct experience and expertise, the faculty provides a training that is rooted in reality.

Our Constitution requires excellence. Its preamble provides a clear vision of the kind of South Africa we come from and the one we should all aspire to build.

»? Sisulu is minister of public service and administration

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