Minister Senzo Mchunu addresses Public Servants at the launch of the Public Service Month 2019

Implementing citizen-centered service delivery

Public Service and Administration Minister, Mr Senzo Mchunu, says South Africa needs a public service that is ethical and free of all forms of corrupt activities and that is citizen-centered.

Minister Mchunu was speaking at the launch of the 2019 Public Service Month in Polokwane last Friday under the theme, “Khawuleza: Taking Public Service to the People. Batho Pele: “We Belong, We Care, We Serve.”

 “South Africa needs a public service that is ethical, value-driven free of corruption because corruption is cancer that steals from the poor, undermines service delivery and stifles economic growth, which adds to unemployment and distribution of wealth.

“We have no choice but to turn the tide on corruption by putting systems in place to punish all those involved, in both the public and the private sectors and ensure that corruption does not become rewarded,” Minister said.

He said citizens have a role to play by ensuring that they do not give ‘cold drinks’ to government officials who are employed to do their job, adding that an active citizenry has always been the missing link in curbing corruption.

Public Service Month is an annual event celebrating Public Servants and it also serves as a mechanism to assess and improve the quality of services and comply with the standards of the Batho Pele Principles.

This year, the celebrations of Heritage Month, Environment and Tourism, are observed under the integrated umbrella of the Public Service Month.

Minister Mchunu said the Public Service Month is a rededication of public servants to the noble calling of being a public servant of note and to adhere to the principles of Batho Pele by promoting the Public Service Charter.

The Minister said the approach of the 6th administration is citizen-centered service delivery with a focus on citizen’s service delivery improvement and citizen’s satisfaction.

“The citizen-centered service delivery is at the heart of our transformative agenda for socio-economic development and youth empowerment,” he said.

Minister Mchunu said the primary policy of Batho Pele includes the White Paper on the Transformation of the Public Service which is a ground-breaking policy underpinned by the Batho Pele principles for the transformation of service delivery that are aligned with the Constitutional ideals.

“This includes promoting and maintaining high standards of professional ethics, providing service impartially, fairly, equitably and without bias. It also includes utilizing resources efficiently and effectively, responding to people’s needs and encouraging citizens to participate in policy making.

“Rendering an accountable, transparent and development orientated public administration is also key to putting people first”.

The Minister said building a capable developmental state requires public servants who are able to master the basics of public service and administration.

“It also requires a social compact between the state and the people – one that guarantees the uninhibited pursuit of the public good and optimal participation by an active citizenry in people-led growth and development initiatives.

“A professional public service is one where people are recruited and promoted on the basis of merit and potential, rather than connections,” he said.

Speaking about the technologies that are already transforming the way people live, work and play, Minister Mchunu said “we are ready to embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution as it has the power to change the economy positively.

“We have to be aware that the technologies can have negative results if we do not think about how they can change us,”  Minister Mchunu said.

The event was also attended by the Deputy Minister for the Public Service and Administration, Ms Sindisiwe Chikunga, Limpopo Social Development MEC (Acting Premier), Nkakareng Rakgoale, DPSA Director-General, Prof Richard Levin and the Public Service Commission’s Director-General, Dr Dovhani Mamphiswana.