Malawi Vice President Saulos Chilima on Tuesday made a passionate plea to government officials to be patriotic, embrace business unusual approach and continue working hard – saying there will be enough time to rest in the grave.
Chilima, who is well known for being a workaholic, disciplined and time conscious, was speaking in Lilongwe when he opened an orientation workshop on Change and Impact Evaluation for parastatal Chief Executive Officers, Reform Champions and Public Relations Officers from Ministries and Government Departments.
“We all have an obligation to this country. Let us change the way we have done things before. Zomati ife kuno ndimomwetipangira zither poti zimenezo sizinatithize (Let us stop saying we can’t change because that’s how we have done business in the past). Let us work to help the 17 million plus Malawians out there,” said Chilima to the 150 delegates.
“Echoeing what the President has always said, let us be patriotic, hard workers and people of integrity. And let us innovate because times are changing. Let us work hard, we are playing catch up as a country and we can’t afford to waste time. Let us not do tomorrow what we can do today. We will sleep or rest enough in the grave,” said Chilima who earlier opposed self-introductions for the 150 delegates apparently because it could be a waste of time.
The Vice President then called on the ministries and the parastatals to retain and motivate best staff, saying such people are the best assets an organisation can have.
“If we want to be an effective public service and reclaim the lost glory that we had as country, it will be people who will do that and not machines so there is need to motivate and retain the best employees in the system,” said Chilima.
He then appealed to the Reform Agents or Directors to be conversant with reforms so that they are able to convert many people into understanding that the reforms are here to improve service delivery and the welfare of the people of Malawi.
“If we all understand the importance of reforming how we have conducted business in this country, it will be easy to domesticate the reforms or commoditise themjust like we all know salt and we buy even if it is not advertised because we know its usefulness,” said Chilima.
The Vice President then appealed to senior government officials working with Public Relations Officers to give the spokespersons breathing space so that they do their work properly without standing on their way.
“Learn to respect other people’s jobs. Allow the PROs to do their work by giving them the necessary information and requirements. Allow them to tell the public the truth. Let them share both good and bad news. From the bad news, learn lessons so you can do better next time,”advised the VP.
The orientation workshop is being facilitated by the Public Service Reforms Management Unit and Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA), a nonprofit organization that creates and evaluates solutions to social and development problems across the globe.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :