Former Secretary to the Cabinet Dr Sketchley Sachika says there is a breakdown of management controls and systems in government which he says have created many opportunities for civil servants to abuse and misappropriate public funds.
And Sachika says the Patriotic Front style of management is like a person who has never driven a car but in given the keys to learn while on the High Way.
Reacting to the continuously increase in abuse of funds in government ministries as revealed in the auditor generals report, Sachika said there were many unqualified individuals in charge of government departments who were failing to deliver services as expected.
“The problem as I see it is that there is a breakdown of management controls and systems in government. This breakdown has created many opportunities for civil servants to misuse resources and it’s all because they think they can get away with it. The problem of breakdown of management controls is that unqualified people are appointed to manage your ministries, your departments and parastatal organisations among other departments. When you appoint people, who are not qualified to management positions, you cannot expect them to deliver services to the expectations of the public. Most of these appointments, wrong appointments are made for political reasons. You have people occupy positions as government secretaries who are not qualified for those positions in terms of management capabilities. But they nevertheless occupy those positions as government secretaries because they are party members and they are friends with those who are in power,” he said.
And Sachika said PF was like an inexperienced driver learning on the road.
“And in the current regime, we are in a situation which is similar to a situation where someone gives car keys to an individual who is not trained as a driver, does not know how to drive, has never driven before and you say here is the car can you drive. What do you expect will happen? Do you expect that person to drive properly or normally? No! They will only wreck your car. That is an analogy of the life today and that is what is happening today. We have unqualified individuals who are running ministries and people expect them to deliver services to the expected standards. And because these people are not qualified they cannot manage an institution or a ministry. Lastly the problem is not only about misuse [of public resources as revealed in the auditor generals report] or stealing of public funds, the problem goes beyond that,” said Sachika.
“Our ministries or government departments are not functioning. They are not functioning, they are not providing the services that we expect them to provide. There is a breakdown of government institutions like the Local government for example. You have parastatal organisations that have stopped functioning because they are not being properly managed. So, you have a problem that is at two levels; abuse and misuse of public funds and breakdown or the disfunction of government institutions and department. So, for me I think that is why there is an increase in abuse of resources as reported in the auditor generals report.”