Public Service Minister’s Press Statement on Public Sector Training Policy

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As the Public Service Minister, it is always an honor to lead and partake in milestone events achieved by the Pacific institute of Leadership and Governance (PILAG). Just recently we witnessed a very important occasion and that was the launching of the Public Sector Training Policy, the first of its kind.

The policy is part and parcel of the government’s pronouncements to put in motion every component of state apparatus to partake in very means possible to Take Back PNG,

Lead agencies in developing the policy.

The Pacific Institute of Leadership and Governance (PILAG) as taken up that challenge by conceiving and developing this policy in close consultation with the Department of Personnel Management (DPM) as the lead agency on Human Resource matters in the country.

The policy is intended to advance the government’s plans and desire t make the entire public service machinery appropriately functional through systematic training and recruitment that ensures merit-based appointments to the public service positions.

Policy alignment with existing policies

This policy is consistent with and compliments the Department of Personnel Management (DPM)’s Human Resource Development Strategic Plan 2020-2050 which was launched in June this year (2021).

The policy will become a tri-prong spear:

  • Firstly, it will reinforce DPM’s Human Resource Development Strategic Plan 2020-2050
  • Secondly, it will be a key impelling force  to drive the current government’s agendas and policy concerns to make the public service performance more effective and efficient with respect to service delivery to our people, and
  • Thirdly, that the development of PILAG’s capability and sustainability mechanism will be better enhanced by virtue of the operations of this policy

Policy objectives

The policy’s objective is aimed at changing the behavior and attitudes of individual public servants through the tailored and targeted ethical and competency-based training they would attain at PILAG.

One of the important aspects of the policy is that the process for training for recruitment into the civil service becomes mandatory. In turn, the effect of this will see merit-based appointments and ensure full-fledged public servants, thus instilling efficiency and confidence throughout the entire spectrum of the public service machinery.

In short, this policy aims to fulfil a number of key objectives. In that it:

  1. Enables consistency in public service workforce capacity development
  2. Enables effective and efficient organization of PILAG functional responsibilities
  3. Fosters wider PILAG reach and presence in all tiers of government
  4. Enhances systematic grooming of ethical and values-based, strong, future-ready public service leaders; and
  5. Promotes Whole of Government arrangement for cost-performance And concerted investment in practical training as the pillar of future economy, future jobs and future skills; and
  6. Encourage long term qualifications under precinct arrangement. UPNG-PILAG Bachelor in Business Management (HR Business Process)

It is my firm conviction that the operation of this policy will fundamentally change the way the public service operates and will bolster the current government’s policy pronouncements and efforts to improve public service as part and parcel of a more strategic and systematized approach to Take Back PNG

It is no secret that for far too long we have held the conventional, popular view that deficiencies inherent in the established government structures, systems and institutions were inappropriate , hance their constant changes and readjustments from time to time.

To re-emphasis my points, under this new policy, the major focus will now be diverted the human element of the public service. It is the individual public servant in the public in the organization who must change in terms of attitudes and behavior towards work, and their sworn commitment to the people of Papua New Guinea to serve them.

This new policy called “Sustainable, Stable and Consistent Public Sector Training for Improved Service Delivery” is deliberately aimed at changing the attitude and behavior of the individual or the human resource elements of organizations.

It is therefore incumbent upon every state agency to take up challenge in expediting this policy through close cooperation and collaboration with the two primary implementing organ-The Department of Personnel Management (DPM) and Pacific Institute of Leadership and Governance (PILAG)-with strict adherence to the policy requirements reflected in the NEC decision and that endorsed this very policy.

In the first instance, the appropriate provisions of the Public Service General Orders must be revisited to accommodate and reflect the policy requirements. That onus lies with the Department of Personnel Management.

Policy endorsement by National Executive Council (NEC)

I would like to reiterate that the Marape/Basil Government has placed greater emphasis towards making sure that Public Sector reforms are amongst its priorities.

This acknowledgement is evident from the NEC endorsement of this training policy for improved public sector performance with a heightened sense of commitment towards reforming the public service.

As the Public Service Minister, I assure PILAG, DPM and all agencies that I will continue to provide you with the support required to ensure the objectives of this policy are achieved. I now echo the Prime Minister’s call in urging all line agencies, Provincial Administrations, Provincial Health Authorities and District Development Authorities to ensure these policy requirements are compiled with as part of the government’s desire to improve public sector performance through the implementation of this policy.

I hope that this training policy will go a long way to guide the institute to provide the training and guidance that public servants will need to create future cadre of public servants.

Finally in acknowledging the prevalence of corruption and complacency alluded to by the Prime Minister, I strongly believe that “Commitment” and “Competency” of individual public servants towards their duty could address the issues of complacency and corruption for the realization of a better performing public service machinery.

Approved for release by:

Hon.Joe Sungi, M.P

Minister for Public Service

 Source: Press statement released from PNG Ministry of Public Service on 15th Sept 2021. Headings added for clarity.