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New SPC warns errant public servants

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Newly-appointed Secretary to the President and Cabinet (SPC) Colleen Zamba has warned that she will deal with all errant principal secretaries and heads of government departments and parastatals whom she said have in the last 12 years put the public service in bad light.

She said she would set up performance targets along lines of transparency and accountability to ensure that they all deliver on their mandates.

Speaking after taking oath of office at Kamuzu Palace Friday, Zamba disclosed that she would also ensure optimal use of human and financial resources.

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“The first tier to deal with is the senior management teams of the civil/public service. I will set up performance targets and I will be reviewing their performance every quarter.

“I will not be waiting until the end of the year to address those that have not been doing anything. Definitely if one is failing to meet the targets, then they are not fit for the job,” she said.

Zamba said she would soon be meeting all Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and Executive Directors (EDs) of statutory corporations, where she observed that there have been governance lapses in terms of recruitments, among other issues.

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“Right now, the Department of Statutory Corporations is already taking steps. As you heard from the President, there is a freeze on any recruitments and renewal of contracts until necessary reviews are concluded. That will guide how we move forward,” she explained.

In his statement, President Lazarus Chakwera challenged his new secretary to support and advise him in the management and security of strategic sectors of the economy and ensure that none of them are left at the mercy of cartels, which he said are driven by selfish interests.

“You are tasked with ensuring that the outcome of all your actions is improved service to Malawians, even if it means becoming unpopular with those who are satisfied with delivering poor service to Malawians…

“You are tasked with standing your ground against forces that are determined to undermine you, discredit you, and conspire against you,” he said.

Chakwera appointed Zamba on Tuesday, replacing Zangazanga Chikhosi.

Before her appointment she served as head for the Presidential Delivery Unit as well as Chief Advisor to the President on Sustainable Development Goals and International Affairs at State House.

Apart from working in the public service in various capacities, Zamba worked as Economic Advisor in UNDP — six years in Nigeria Country Office, four years Zambia Country Office and one year covering Swaziland and Lesotho country offices.

She holds qualifications in macroeconomics, development policy and social science.

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