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Is service delivery within KwaZulu-Natal set to improve? This follows the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Executive Council resolving to conduct a skills audit in government to ensure that public servants deliver higher quality services to their respective residents.
Addressing the Government Capacity and Performance Review Conference in Durban, on Monday, 7 November 2022, KZN Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube said that while a skills audit has been conducted on municipal officials, the skills audit in government departments would be finalised in 2023.
The municipal officials’ skill audit revealed, among others, the following:
- Training needs for senior managers,
- Financial management
- Strategic capability and leadership.
- ·Risk management.
- Change management.
- Policy development and monitoring and evaluation.
- It should also be noted, the audit found that 298 of the KZN’s 1 944 councillors do not have adequate writing and reading skills, and others have no formal education. The matter is apparently being addressed.
With the skills audit now focusing on the KZN Government sector, the Premier said, “The Public Service will not be able to deliver higher quality public services to our citizens if public servants are not capable and competent. The skills audit will assist us to ascertain whether as the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Administration has the required skills set to deliver services to our people. The exercise is assisting us to know the skills in supply and the skills in demand.”
Dube-Ncube further highlighted that the province has developed a Framework for Mentorship and Coaching to address the findings of the skills audit. She stressed that councillors are being capacitated on the complexities of the District Development Model through the Integrated Councillor Induction Programme and Sector Based Councillor Orientation Workshops.
“The repositioned Provincial Training Academy is prioritising key skills and capacity building interventions to improve service delivery in partnership with the National School of Governance and other institutions. Through this partnership, several training courses have taken place, including the course of Ethics, Theory of Change and related competencies,” added the Premier.
Whereby she further said that building capabilities are key to retooling the State for higher performance.
“We need to have a good cadre of public service that is desired in Singapore and other world-class economies that is proud to work for the State. A functional and integrated government requires a professional, responsive and meritocratic public service cadre that is obsessed with efficiency and citizen-focused delivery. To be able to lead a state that is capable of playing a developmental and transformative role, this public service must be immersed in the development agenda but must be insulated from undue political interference,” said the Premier.
Moreover, she affirmed that the province was addressing corruption through the Provincial Anti-Corruption Implementation Plan.
In light thereof, the Office of the Premier, together with the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA), the Special Investigations Unit, the Hawks and the National Prosecuting Authority are working together as a forum in conducting the ethics and anti-corruption awareness campaigns.
With the above in mind, what are your thoughts? Share your views in the comment section below.