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APPOINTMENT OF DCS BY THE PRESIDENT CONTRADICTS KEY UPND MANIFESTO 2021-2026 COMMITMENTS ON PUBLIC SERVICE

APPOINTMENT OF DCS BY THE PRESIDENT CONTRADICTS KEY UPND MANIFESTO 2021-2026 COMMITMENTS ON PUBLIC SERVICE

Dear Editor, ON page 17 of UPND summary manifesto 2021- 2026, concerning the subject of public service, Zambians were promised that if voted into power, UPND in government was going to ensure that there was dedicated and professional public service that should provide a more enabling environment for socio-economic development in the country. In this regard, UPND committed itself to ensure that if elected into government, it would reform the public service by undertaking two key measures on appointments as follows: First, to depoliticise the public service and improve leadership and managerial skills as well as the mindset to ensure optimal public service system. But alas, President Hakainde Hichilema has appointed UPND cadres as DCs, exactly in the same manner PF and MMD did. The expectation of the public on this commitment was that the Public Service Commission would have been the sole authority to scrutinise public service workers, within the system and through it, appoint officers with best leadership and managerial skills, to run districts as District Commissioners. Sadly, the noble commitment made by UPND to professionalise the public service has been thrown to the wind. The second key commitment was to restructure and re-orient the Public Service Commission so that it can protect the public service from unwarranted political interference and ensure that the merit principle is respected in the appointments and promotions. On the contrary, the appointment of cadres by the President is a serious U-turn on this very noble commitment. The Public Service Commission has not been restructured. It has not been re-oriented. It remains deprived of authority to protectthe public service from unwarranted political interference. It still remains deprived of the authority to protect the public service from unwarranted political interference. The merit principle remains unrestricted in the appointments and promotions. Nothing has changed from MMD and PF in this regard. Sadly, President Bally has missed a golden opportunity to make a difference in this regard. Dreams of meritorious public service employees who were expectant from UPND’s solemn promises in this regard have been shattered. Regrettably, cadres will continue to reign in public service in all districts across the country. PETER SINKAMBA.

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