31 Mar 2005

Fiji public service commission to explore new service proposal

9:28 am on 31 March 2005

The chairman of Fiji's Public Service Commission, Stuart Huggett, says a proposal to create a new civil service will help rid the sector he says has been rife with corruption.

Mr Huggett says the current service is too complex, there are too many ministries, at a total of 23, and there's often a doubling-up of effort, and overlapping of responsibilities.

The commission intends to explore the option of a new public service, which would be likely to have 10 or fewer main departments.

Mr Huggett says people will be consulted and encouraged to submit their thoughts on the proposal, which won't necessarily mean job losses.

But he says the current civil service takes up far too much of Fiji's revenues, and could be more cost-effective.

"Of course we're going through the process of rooting out corruption and dealing with it in disciplinary and other sorts of actions but in the end I would like to think there are better ways of operating the service so that there are fewer temptations to corruption and better checks and balances on people's activities."