PM spearheads bold govt innovation moves

28 July 2020 | Government

ELLANIE SMIT

WINDHOEK



Government is set to implement pilot one-stop service centres with online portals to facilitate shared public services through its newly launched public sector innovation policy.

Speaking at the launch of the policy last week, Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said to improve service delivery, government has over the last five years prioritised the implementation of its performance management system (PMS), which entails strategic plans, annual plans and performance agreements at all public institutions at national and regional level. “While we have made strides in operationalising the PMS, innovation through automation of the system will help to optimise the system to improve service delivery.”

She said the abrupt and profound disruption of the coronavirus pandemic has emphasised the importance of adaptation to technology in public service delivery systems, as health measures adopted to fight the pandemic require more public servants to work from home using information and communications technology.



Meeting citizens' needs

Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said with the changes, not only due to the coronavirus, but because of the ongoing Fourth Industrial Revolution that is unfolding worldwide, new approaches need to be embraced.

She said this should be based on best practices to modernise public service and customise it towards meeting citizens' needs and expectations.

“It is in this context that we have decided to embark on public sector innovation reform journey. This journey requires us to embrace creativity and innovation as our pathfinder to avoid being left behind as the world migrates from the information age into the innovation age.”

She said government will, as part of these efforts, pilot one-stop service centres with online portals to facilitate shared public services through these portals or single windows of service delivery.



Significant improvement

“This policy is underpinned by the research findings elucidating that the introduction and implementation of innovation in the public sector culminates into new ideas, practices, services and technologies, leading to significant improvement in service delivery.”

Kuugongelwa-Amadhila, however, added that the implementation of the policy will require a multi-pronged approach as well as collaboration with multiple stakeholders to tackle service delivery problems.

She said once the policy is successfully implemented and its outcomes realised, it will lead to the elimination of bureaucratic silos and departmentalisation, thus enhancing proper coordination and interdependence in governance.

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