South Sudan: Oil Wealth to Be Utilised in Developing Human Resources

Photo: Joseph Kariuki/The Star
Oil rig (file photo).

Juba — The Government of South Sudan is investing a significant percentage of the country's vast oil and mineral wealth in developing human resources and putting in place a modern civil service.

The acting Minister for Labour, Public Service and Human Resource Development, Hon Kwong Danhier Gatluak, said that effective service delivery will only be possible through an adequate pool of a highly skilled, professional, motivated, productive and well managed civil service.

Hon Kwong said five decades of war had ruined civil service structures and precipitated a brain drain of South Sudan's highly qualified, experienced and competent professionals in all sectors who either joined the liberation movement or fled the country altogether for their own safety and livelihood.

"In so doing, they left a very big vacuum that could only be filled by largely less experienced, competent and qualified personnel. This resulted in poor delivery of basic services to the citizenry meant to ensure their wellbeing," he said.

The acting minister was speaking when he officially opened the 9th Meeting of the Regional Capacity Building (RCB) Project at a Juba hotel. The RCB is a 5-year capacity building initiative funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the Public Administration and Leadership Academy (PALAMA) of South Africa as the implementing agency.

Noting that the project was coming to an end in 2013, Hon Kwong said the Ministry would continue with capacity building efforts at national, state and local levels of government.

The minister urged civil servants and other stakeholders involved in the management of the project to own it by implementing aspects which would address South Sudan's specific needs.

"We should shift from supply-driven to demand-driven capacity development initiatives," he said.

He further urged the implementers to focus on results that would have a lasting impact on eradicating poverty, reducing inequality, promoting sustainable development and enhancing local capacities in line with the priorities and policies in the South Sudan Development Plan.

Speaking at the function, the acting Director General for Human Resource Development in the Ministry, Madam Sunday Aggrey Jaden, said the aim of the RCB Project was to improve public service capacity management and leadership capability for better service delivery through training interventions in Burundi, Rwanda and South Sudan.

Madam Sunday said the ultimate goal of the project was to achieve institutional capacity development, adding that planned outputs of the project were curriculum development and training capacity in the participating countries.

Also present at the function was Dr Mary L. Ledwaba, Chief Director (Executive Development) at PALAMA.

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