The singsong of decentralising civil service operations in the country has once again been re-echoed. On the sidelines of the annual conference of officials of the central and devolved services of the Ministry of Public Service and Administrative Reform which rumbled off in Yaounde January 25, authorities reiterated the need to get the decentralisation of civil service operation on a good footing. Hope is that they want to fast-track the much-heralded process.
Many would obviously wave this with the back of their hands looking at the long drawn talk on the subject vis-a-vis fruits on the ground. Tenable or not, the fact that so many people from almost all nooks and crannies of the country still undertake long and tiring journeys to the different administrations in Yaounde to do what would have easily been done in the Regions, Divisions and even Subdivisions lend credence to existing loopholes.
Else, why would civil servants queue up to have career advancement decisions when such would have been printed at due times and served them at their different administrations?
The notion of integrated management of civil service operations, especially careers, sent many thinking that the date of entry into the public service of each civil servant, his/her place of work and function could be gotten in just a second after a simple click of a keyboard.
This also appeared to mean that the set-up was arranged in such a way that once one clocks two years – civil service advancement period, the advancement decision is printed and sent to the owner and the financial spinoffs incorporated into the worker’s salary without much ado. This would have been the ideal but visibly, it is still far from being the reality.
Talk of moving from SIGIPES I to II to enhance all these operations does not seem to have yielded the required fruit. Something is certainly wrong somewhere. Observation points to a possibility of existing human walls, mounted especially by unscrupulous officials through multiple networks.
Inasmuch as this sorry situation may and should be fetching the perpetrators fortunes, the civil service is limping and servants suffering under the weight. Holding tight in Yaounde to what Regions, Divisions and Subdivisions could as well do is synonymous to giving Yaounde authorities absolute powers which corrupt absolutely.
This is a serious drawback to good governance which government is at the same time crusading to achieve. It also greatly burdens the civil servants most of whom travel long distances and live under difficult conditions in Yaounde just to get what they would have gotten in their areas.
Needless talking about the prejudice such bottlenecks leave on the services the servants would have offered to the public and government. Efficiency and job satisfaction are difficult, if not impossible, to attain under such settings. Those bad habits must be made to die!
As officials are, “Assessing the level of implementation of the reform on the devolution of the management of State personnel and the payroll,” hope is that success will at last be attained in dismantling the networks inhibiting the efficacy of decentralising civil service operations. Visible fruits are thus highly awaited on the field as the Yaounde conclave drops curtains giving way for things to be made more concrete!