EDITORIAL: Act soon
There should be no delay in fully adjusting the civil servants to carry out the people’s work at all levels of the governments
It will take the government at least one year to fully adjust the civil servants in the three tiers of government – local, provincial and federal. Elections to the local bodies have already elected office bearers for 753 local levels. They are supposed to be providing various kinds of services to the service seekers. If the adjustments are not made timely then the local level bodies would not be able to fulfill their role of delivering services in an effective manner. The provincial and federal governments would also require services of a full-fledged bureaucracy as soon as possible. For the adjustment process the government will be forming a survey committee led by a former secretary. The Ministry of General Administration has sent the Ministry of Finance a draft of the Civil Servants Adjustment Regulations for approval. The survey committee, among other things, would carry out a number of activities including studying the structure and number of civil servants required in the three tiers of governments.
The government was supposed to endorse the regulations prior to forming a survey committee which would need at least two months. Thereafter, the committee would be submitting the report to the government within a period of six months. At present, the draft is with the Finance Ministry, and it is expected that the MoGA will receive an approval from it. This would then be sent to the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs to grant it its approval. After these formalities the regulations would be forwarded to the Cabinet for its approval. 15 days after the President’s authentication the Civil Servants Adjustment Bill, the MoGA drafted the regulations by holding consultations with Ministry of Federal Affairs and Development taking into account the provisions of law.
The survey committee has been assigned the task of analyzing the details of all 86,000 government employees. The details would be their seniority, service period, postings and their preferences to be acquired from the concerned ministries. Those civil servants who do not want to be adjusted have been provided the provision for a voluntary retirement scheme. Criteria for adjustment of the new Civil Servants Adjustment Act would be on the basis of their seniority, permanent address and to accommodate the employees’ preferences as far as possible. Services mooted under the regulations would include statistics, engineering, agriculture, justice, administration, forest, education and health services by the adjustment of the government employees. The survey committee envisages appointing five members from the first class officers who are at present serving in the administration, engineering, agriculture, forest and health sectors. If required this committee can approach the concerned experts thereby enabling it to make the action plan. The committee’s member secretary would be a joint secretary of the MoGA. Adjusting all the civil servant required in the local, provincial and federal bodies would not be easy. Still it is hoped they will be adjusted in the given time frame. There should be no delay in fully adjusting the civil servants to carry out the people’s work at all the three tiers. This is necessary if we expect the various urgent works to be undertaken for the benefit of the service seekers expedited.
Use of ICT
Communications and information technology have now become an inseparable part of our life. The technology provides immense source of information in all fields. It is highly useful in the education sector where children can learn quickly if the information technology is imparted in classroom activities. In developed countries, students are given home works or project assignments through e-mail and apps developed by the concerned institutions. In most cases the students have stopped using papers and pen and have solely depended on laptops.
But in Nepal, use of information technology is confined only to banking, media, medicine, airlines and other organized sectors where a large number of people are engaged in business activities. The education sector has been lagging behind on using
this technology. The public and private schools in urban and rural areas have yet to fully utilize it for a better quality of education. Children can excel in any of the subjects if they are taught through information technology. But sad to say most of the public schools do not even have access to electricity, let alone computers and internet.