Address of Hon Ahmad Sulliman Jeewah, Minister of Civil Service Affairs and Administrative Reforms on the occasion of The Award Ceremony at The University of Technology, Mauritius, on Monday 21, March, 2005.
Mr. Ponnusamy, Senior Chief Executive, Ministry of Civil Service Affairs and
Administrative Reforms
Mr. Oozeer, Permanent Secretary
Professor Coupe, Director General, University of Technology, Mauritius
Dr. Durbarry, Head of School of Public Sector Policy and Management
Officers of my Ministry,
Representatives of Trade Unions,
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am very pleased to be in your midst this morning for this award ceremony, organized by my Ministry in collaboration with the University of Technology, Mauritius and during which 116 officers of the General Service Cadre who have successfully completed their respective courses will be given their certificates.
Let me first of all recall that these Award Courses are in line with the implementation of the recommendations made by the PRB in its 2003 Report and which have as one of its objectives the sharing of the latest concepts and trends in Public Sector Management with officers of the General Service.
There is no doubt that the University of Technology, Mauritius along with other training institutions are vital links in the training and staff development process. This process of human resource development is also akin to the vision of the Government to transform Mauritius into a knowledge hub and a learning society. This vision is further translated into the mandate and mission of my ministry to modernize the Public Service in order to achieve excellence in the delivery of services and ensure good governance. My Ministry has also been entrusted with the responsibility of providing training to Public Officers in order to equip them with the necessary knowledge, skills and competencies so as to help them perform their duties more effectively and efficiently.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Everybody will agree that the most valuable resource in an organisation is the human resource. Knowledged workers will represent the brain power and the intellectual capital required in order to ensure the sustainable competitive advantage of our organizations and the society at large. This is what the present Government, with its strong will and commitment, is aiming at in the long run.
My Ministry has been partnering with the UTM since October 2000 where various avenues and possibilities of collaboration have been explored. It ranges from the mounting of focused training programmes for Public Officers at all levels in the form of induction and refresher courses, one year full time Diploma Course in Administration and Management for Assistant Secretaries and recently the placement and traineeship opportunities granted to some twenty UTM students following the BSc Public Administration and Management Course.
Furthermore, my Ministry 's positive response to reward the student who has put up the best performance in the BSc Public Administration and Management Course, as well as in the MSc Public Sector Management Course bears testimony to our continuing support to encourage and motivate our youth to embark and excel in public sector management courses.
Through the provision of such courses, the University of Technology, Mauritius will no doubt promote and support wide-ranging changes in the Public Service with particular emphasis on new Public Management, performance Management, Ethics, Good Governance and Public Accountability.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Government has taken the pledge to build a World Class Public Service by providing to Public Officers and to those who aspire to join the Public Service with the necessary facilities and incentives and above all with a conducive learning environment.
However, the impact of globalization, coupled with the advances in the technological environment and the increasing needs and requirements of the "aware public", are exerting much pressure on the traditional ways that public services are being offered. This is an enormous challenge for the Public Sector. The need to revisit our ways of doing things in the delivery of services is therefore inescapable and in such a context, our public service has no alternative than to constantly adapt to the economic realities of Mauritius.
To further support the reform process of the Public Sector, my Ministry and the Mauritius Research Council signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 10 March 2005, providing the necessary framework of collaboration between the two institutions for the implementation of the Public Sector Collaborative Research Grant Scheme. Henceforth, Public Officers willing to undertake research in priority fields as defined by the MRC will be able to do so with the technical and financial assistance from the Government.
I wish here to encourage Public Officers to make the most of these laudable initiatives in order to drive the reform strategies and make change happen rather than to wait for such changes in the Public Service:
On behalf of my Ministry and in my own name, let me congratulate you all for your success which no doubt is the result of hard work and perseverance. By successfully completing the award courses, you have now the opportunity to embark on higher studies at this prestigious University. I wish you all, good luck in your future endeavours.
With these words, Ladies and Gentlemen I thank you for your kind attention.