Chief Secretary to Government Manasupe Zurenuoc said the National Executive Council has formally adopted priority areas outlined in the ‘ Alotau Accord’ and the public service has been directed to implement them within the framework of the Governments development plans over the next five years.
In July 2012, the Coalition partners outlined their main priorities in the Alotau Accord for a Government of Reconciliation, Unity and Hope for Stability and Prosperity – A Platform for Action.
Mr Zurenuoc said as a first step to ensure that these priorities are implemented, members of the Central Agencies Coordinating Committee (CACC) has met individually with relevant Departmental Heads to outline the priorities for their respective Departments.
“Members of CACC were pleased to note that many of the Departments are already well underway with the implementation of some priorities. Some priorities represent the continuation of an existing work program and need only slight adjustments.
“Members also noted that many Departmental Heads had already discussed the priorities with their Minister and had agreed on a course of action.
“CACC will receive regular updates from Departmental Heads on their progress towards these priorities, as well as notification of any problems or issues with implementation,” he said.
The Chief Secretary, who is also the Chairman of the CACC, said some of the key priorities are new and some Departments have a great deal of work to do with their Ministers to develop new policies and programs.
He said the CACC will be monitoring their progress.
“Departmental Heads have been given clear directions and will be expected to implement these priorities as soon as possible. For too long performance of Departmental Heads has gone unchecked.
“That will no longer be the case. There will now be regular monitoring of their performance. If these priories are not implemented, serious questions about the performance of the Departmental Heads will be asked,” Mr Zurenuoc said.
He said officers from the Departments of Treasury, National Planning & Monitoring, Personal Management and Provincial and Local-level Government Affairs were able to provide important whole of government input.
“Many of the new priorities have significant budget and planning implications as well as affecting staffing numbers and provincial administrations. Departments can no longer work in isolation.
“Members of CACC reinforced the need for Departmental Heads to work in partnership with their colleagues in provincial administrations. Many of the initiatives cannot be implemented in Waigani.
“This was emphasized to the Department of Education. The successful implementation of the fee free education policy is only possible with the skills and knowledge of provincial administrations,” the Chief Secretary said.