11 April 2014

Mozambique: Report On Corruption to Go Before Govt

Maputo — Mozambique's Minister for the Public Service, Vitoria Diogo, announced on Thursday that next week the full Council of Ministers (Cabinet) will analyse a report on state employees involved in acts of corruption and other illicit practices.

She was speaking to reporters at a quarterly meeting of Permanent Secretaries of ministries and other central state bodies.

“Every month we read in the press of cases of public officials on trial for diverting funds, theft and bribery”, she said. “We have the courts and the Central Office for the Fight against Corruption (GCCC) working on the matter. The report will be presented to the Council of Ministers and, when it is approved, we shall make all the data public”.

The latest GCCC monthly press briefing revealed the arrest of four staff at the Zambezia provincial hospital accused of the theft of medicines, two senior staff of the public electricity company, EDM, in the northern city of Nampula for defrauding EDM of 526,000 meticais (about 17,250 US dollars), a law officer in the Higher Council of the Public Prosecutor's Office, accused of stealing 70,000 meticais, and several policemen accused of bribery and extortion.

Diogo told the Thursday meeting that the government is assessing implementation of the “adaptation allowance” granted to state employees transferred to remote parts of the country. The allowance is three times the basic wage for anyone transferred to a rural area, and is intended to allow them to adapt to the new reality they face, since the government is unable to build housing for all its staff.

“This measure was approved last February, and is part of a philosophy of staff mobility in the interest of ensuring that they understand the dynamic of the wages and remuneration policy approved in 2009”, she said. One of the objectives of that policy is to retain skilled staff in the state apparatus, and to re-allocate staff to various parts of the country in case of need.

The meeting is also assessing the current state of the public sector reforms, notably the service charters which, according to Diogo, should be posted in each state institution to inform the public about the services it provides.

“The service charter should be obligatory so that citizens understand the types of services offered”, she said. “The values of the institution, its objectives and its duties should all be included in the charter”.

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