Here it comes again

The cobwebs in the civil service need a thorough cleansing, especially in the altered political milieu. A taskforce has been formed to draft a blueprint with a view to ridding the civil service of corruption, inefficiency and non-professionalism. This is a positive, yet a gigantic task, as the number of those who equate civil service with red-tapism, unclear division of labour and unaccountability appear to be, rather astonishingly, in a majority. The idea is to make the civil service inclusive and to enforce the new code of conduct. The blueprint proposes a direct evaluation of the performance of civil servants by the public.

Every time change is made to improve in the performance of civil servants, similar reasons have been put forth. But the stark reality is that service delivery has hardly ever improved. If there is a will to improve the bureaucracy’s modus operandi, the existing laws should be enforced strictly. The results will be evident in no time. In government service, the performance part has been extremely poor. When it comes to rewarding or punishing employees, the quality factor always takes the back seat. Even those whose performance is shoddy to the hilt are hardly ever penalised. The unholy nexus between and among politicians, businessmen and bureaucrats must be smashed and burnt. The judiciary can play a decisive role in setting things right but, alas, it too has left much to be desired. Unless Knight errants are subjected to heavy punishment, it will be naive to expect the ‘blueprint’ to make a difference.