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Government adamant on reforms

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Despite concerns that government has slowed down on the implementation of reforms which were launched in February in 2015, the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology has said significant strides have been made in the reforms.

At a press conference in Lilongwe Monday, Minister of Information and Communications Technology, Nicholas Dausi, said Malawians need to give credit where it is due.

“Reforms are not just about reduction of presidential powers. Reforms are taking place in many areas. Surely, you wouldn’t want to have a president who would not be able to make decisions.

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“Let us focus on the reforms being made. Currently, reforms are taking place in 17 ministries and 53 statutory corporations, as well as 35 city, town, municipal and district councils,” Dausi said.

He was responding to a question on whether it is possible that people are not appreciating the efforts being made in the reforms, because some serious areas of reforms, like reduction of presidential powers are not being considered.

“You cannot say reforms are not taking place because you are looking at how many powers of the president are being scrapped off. Surely, there is progress being made in reforms,” Dausi said.

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The Public Sector Reforms Commission which was chaired by Vice President, Saulos Chilima, completed its work in January this year.

The mandate of managing the reforms was handed over to the Chief Secretary in the Office of the President and Cabinet (OPC) to provide overall leadership and oversight.

At the press conference, Chief Director of Public Sector Reforms Unit, Seodi White, said reforms will be part of the work the National Planning Commission will handle.

“Currently, over 46 laws have been passed. All these are part of the medium to long-term planning. We will also make sure that reforms will guide the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy. This is your country, don’t be blinded by other forces. Go and check the reforms being undertaken. The country is changing,” White said.

During the press conference, which was also attended by Chief Secretary to Government, Lloyd Muhara, White spent about 30 minutes reading 12 pages of the 15-page document distributed to journalists at the end of the briefing.

She said one of the notable reforms being implemented by the OPC, is the creation of One-Stop Public Service Delivery Centres in Lilongwe and Mangochi.

She also said in order to institutionalise the reforms in the public sector, government is reviewing the Malawi Public Service Act and Malawi Public Service Regulations (MPSR).

White also said government is currently developing the Malawi Service Management Policy, Malawi Public Sector Reform Policy, as well as harmonising the service commissions in the Malawi Public Service.

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