Urban and rural ministry tackles weaknesses

09 April 2019 | Government

Urban and rural development minister Peya Mushelenga this week took aim at a number of staff performance weaknesses hampering service delivery at his ministry.

During the minister's annual staff address, he tackled a number of issues including lack of punctuality, productivity, efficiency and innovation. He urged staff members to take more interest in their work, to adhere to performance agreements and to be more proactive.

He further stressed that this is the year of accountability, and that all staff are jointly responsible for the work output and quality of the ministry.

Mushelenga said in particular two divisions, which he did not name, were underperforming, and sometimes took “days, weeks” to finish important tasks.

“When you underperform you are cheating government. Your salary is paid according to your job description,” he said.

He further emphasised the need for quality rather than quantity.

Another issue Mushelenga highlighted was the lack of feedback and communication within the ministry, and between the ministry and service providers.

“If you know someone needs to be paid, communicate on time. Don't wait for them to come and beg as if they are borrowing money.”

He said even if the money could not be paid promptly, the service providers should be informed in a timely and efficient manner.

“These people have employees too that they are supposed to pay. Meanwhile, you keep people waiting.”

Mushelenga also took to task other government agencies, including the office of the government attorneys, saying they sometimes failed to communicate efficiently and in a timely manner.

Mushelenga said the ministry is often embroiled in litigation, but at times is only advised of the notices at a very late stage or after responses have already been filed by the government attorney on the case. He said sometimes cases are lost because documentation or information is not shared promptly with the ministry.



Staff feedback

During the feedback slot, staff highlighted issues they say cause delays and cripple their ability to perform diligently, including limited technical staff and lack of collaboration and communication between various departments.

A major issue pointed out by a staff member was a mismatch between too many support staff and too few technical staff, which leads to lengthy delays, backlogs, poor performance and inability to reach targets.

This lack of capacity had been addressed in a restructuring proposal a few years ago, a staff member said.

He warned that unless the chronic lack of capacity within these crucial departments was addressed, “delays will remain”.

Both Mushelenga and executive director Nghidinwa Daniel acknowledged the capacity issues at the ministry but urged staff to recognise and work around current limitations, including a general hold on new appointments throughout the public service.

Other staff also underlined that the “work mentality” of many in the ministry, and the government overall, poses a major roadblock to improved service delivery and productivity. Another member of staff stressed that they are acutely aware that “the issue of land is critical” but that in some cases senior managers do not take the “plight of Namibians”, especially those in informal settlements, equally seriously.

Daniel highlighted all the issues put on the table by both the minister and staff, and provided feedback and suggestions.

He agreed that while a lack of skills was problematic, “we are called upon to make the best with what we have”.

JANA-MARI SMITH

Similar News

 

Guibeb in debt scandal

4 days ago - 17 May 2019 | Government

JEMIMA BEUKES A German newspaper has accused the Namibian ambassador to Germany, Andreas Guibeb, of abusing his diplomatic status and running up debts of about...

'Let's move on'

5 days ago - 16 May 2019 | Government

President Hage Geingob has dismissed calls for the establishment of a South African-style Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) to deal with the unresolved pain and...

National Council resumes

1 week ago - 14 May 2019 | Government

The National Council (NC) resumed its sessions yesterday and its chairperson Margaret Mensah-Williams said during 2018, a total of 20 bills were reviewed that were...

Kapia irked by busy PM

2 weeks ago - 06 May 2019 | Government

ILENI NANDJATO Former deputy works minister Paulus Ilonga Kapia has expressed his frustration over the fact that Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila and agriculture minister Alpheus...

Industries must compete globally

2 weeks ago - 06 May 2019 | Government

Prime Minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila says too much infant industry protection will lead to Namibia violating international competition rules.She said local producers must consider seizing opportunities...

Vision 2030 to be reviewed

3 weeks ago - 29 April 2019 | Government

The National Planning Commission has announced that Namibia's grand plan to become an industrialised nation with a high income by the year 2030 needs to...

Huawei donates to human rights campaign

3 weeks ago - 29 April 2019 | Government

Huawei Namibia has handed over N$50 000 to the chairperson of the National Council, Margaret Mensah-Williams, for the human rights campaign 'The Journey'.Mensah-Williams said the...

Public procurement lacks transparency

3 weeks ago - 25 April 2019 | Government

An independent policy watchdog in Namibia continues to shine a spotlight on the serious troubles crippling Namibia's public procurement system and the body in charge,...

Travelling is not fun – Hage

4 weeks ago - 23 April 2019 | Government

President Hage Geingob last week told lawmakers in parliament that his frequent overseas trips don't meant that he enjoys travelling.He made the remark during a...

Ihandi tyapula omalweendo – Hage

4 weeks ago - 23 April 2019 | Government

Omupresidende Hage Geingob oshiwike sha piti okwa lombwele aatotiveta kutya itashi ti kutya sho ha ende olundji oha tyapula okweenda enda. Okwa popi ngaaka pethimbo...

Latest News

Deadbeat dads

8 hours ago | Social Issues

Although Namibian law holds both parents equally responsible for meeting the basic needs of their children, nearly half of households are run by single mothers,...

Live for the moments, not...

8 hours ago | People

Mariselle StofbergCarla van Zyl is the top medical student from the class of 2018 at the University of Namibia (Unam). This motivated, driven and passionate...

Taking collective responsibility

8 hours ago | Columns

It is indeed encouraging to see Namibians in general expressing their support and speaking out in defence of sexual assault survivors. Stigma can compound the...

You can’t Photoshop feelings ...

8 hours ago | Columns

Justicia Shipena I came across a man at a workshop I attended and he said to me: "Write what you are feeling. Tell the...

Nakuumba still open to Angolan...

8 hours ago | International

Local businessman Titus Nakuumba says he is still open to negotiating with government for the purchase of his land situated in Luanda's Polo Industrial Area....

Trucker recalls terrible crash

8 hours ago | Accidents

Six people, including a five-year-old girl, died in an accident on the B1 road between Otjiwarongo and Okahandja on Sunday afternoon. According to the...

A competitive culture

8 hours ago | Sports

Ester KamatiFNB Classic Clashes was established in 2008 by First National Bank (FNB) of Namibia as an initiative to give scholars a platform to socialise...

Lingua marketing day a huge...

8 hours ago | Education

Evany van WykOn 16 May, the annual International Training College Lingua marketing day was held at the main campus in Windhoek. This day is held...

Kunene's Sida Di/Goan initiative lauded

8 hours ago | Education

President Hage Geingob expressed delight with the Sida Di/Goan initiative, which specialises in repairing the broken chairs, tables and beds of schools in the Kunene...

Load More