Feature Article of Friday, 5 April 2013
It is being suggested that non-performing ministers must be sacked. Now, why sack only non-performing ministers? Why not sack all non-performing civil servants? No civil servant should retain their job at the expensive of the tax payer if they are not performing. The civil service is not a charitable organization; therefore all civil servants should earn their keep.
Everywhere you look in the public sector in Ghana there is gross inefficiency, lack of accountability, and the leaders and managers are so ineffective. Non-performance has become the order of the day. Let’s face it; we have a culture of complacency and non-performance right across the board. Also, we have a terrible attitude towards customer service and care. If we are to compete successfully in the global market, we need to change our attitude and culture of complacency.
The irony is, Ghana has some of the best universities and colleges in the world, and they produce some of the best brains. However, when we are on the ground in business or serving as a civil servant or as a government minister, we don’t perform as well as we ought to. I just don’t understand? Ghanaians working abroad do very well and most often than not exceeds all expectations of their employers, but when the same person(s) is working back home in Ghana, it is a different story! Why? What is wrong with us?
Now back to the non-performing ministers. The sixty million dollar question is, do our ministers possess the managerial and leadership skills necessary to effect a change thereby promoting a performance culture at their respective ministries and departments? I strongly believe the entire culture of performance in the public sector needs to change. The ministers should incorporate good private sector business practices in the management and administration of their respective ministries and departments. They should also adopt sound management and leadership principles. Lead by example, by first holding themselves to the highest possible performance standard then demand it from their staff.
The ministers should have a job description which clearly defines their duties and responsibilities, and expectations of their departments. Then a realistic performance targets and goals should be set, and an annual performance evaluation be conducted against the pre-determined goals and targets. And in the event that any minister fails to perform, then they should get the boot. The same principle should apply to all civil servants. Our ministers and civil servants must be held to the highest possible performance standard, and under no circumstances whatsoever should a substandard performance be accepted nor tolerated.
The civil service should hire and retain the best and the brightest, and to introduce performance based salary culture for both ministers and civil servants which will address the issue of non-performance.
Komla – The Self- proclaimed Peace Broker.
God bless Ghana, and long live Ghana