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Development stifled and Public Service

Bureaucracy and Consultancies -Heavyweight Governor!? Facebook

There was this retired public servant gentleman with whom I was having a discourse about some specifics about the state of Montserrat. He/we concluded that missing is an education which will come through information and discussions among people. So, he suggested the use of Facebook.

I promptly noted that Facebook, in its setting is good for rallying groups together, but in a general way does not reach as many people, certainly not all the people, often those for the masses to whom certain material and important matters are targeted. I reminded that Facebook is a great tool for what it is good for. I offered my usual description – It is about entertainment, gossip and mischief…varying information which should be always verified.

But as suggested it is a good meeting place to exchange thoughts and information among those willing to participate.

It has been suggested often, that TMR in fact had the first Facebook back in the 90s.

It is here, that some posts and comments caught my attention that I felt compelled to share, especially with our readers who otherwise would not know about. The matter though only recently highlighted was first aired at Governor’s coffee morning with the media on September 26.

There he said on the matter of the public service very much the same as was later captured in that ZJB report where he was quoted as, “once again voicing his concern about the high level of bureaucracy in the public service…challenging them to be more result oriented…”

The Governor took aim at the number of consultancies done on the island and some of the needless processes in the public sector …that the bureaucratic red tape inherited from the U.K. is stifling development.

He said: “…there are consultancy reports analyzing previous consultancies going back decades; and there’s a consultancy on every conceivable thing you can think of; furniture, everything, air conditioning, the works. And then you add on top of that that if you want to go on leave, the process is quite stupendous.  The ‘Brits’, we’ve made a mess of a lot of things around the world. For a tiny island we have made an incredible mess. It has to be said says is something very unique and special to Britain… we but the amount of bureaucracy we reproduce is stupendous, and here we sort of incubated it; and if you want to go on leave you fill in a form and then it has to go round about 10 people. By the time it eventually comes back to you to confirm you can go on leave you’re near retirement…”

The Governor addressing that CARICOM meeting a few weeks ago, continues: “The level of bureaucracy, the level of complexity that’s expected on the village on a rock like Montserrat…it is the size of a British village on a relatively remote rock in the Caribbean. And we expect it to run its own port, run its own airport, run its customs, collect its taxes, organise its pensions, organise its civil service, to best practice, run a police force, run a Marine vessel, be ready to do search and rescue; do all sorts of financial services activities; and most recently, participate in arranging sanctions against Iran and Burma and maintain lists of things like dual use products that could be diverted into chemical weapons misuse. we’re expecting all of that of ourselves, of a village. And it ain’t ever going to happen, not in a month of Sundays will that happen, the model is wrong, we shouldn’t ever pretend otherwise. You can talk about it all, you can write about it…we can write all these reports and have all these committee meetings and at the end, nothing happens.”

At Facebook some important things get commented on. The foregoing was referred to and expressed as follows:

By Howard Fergus 

His Excellency is a heavy weight
in this Her Majesty’s dominion,
DfID’s footstool, and playground
of British civil servants over the years.
The Governor weighed against the service
recently, with damning clarity.

Bureaucracy was slow and paralytic,
communication was circuitous
with letters taking ages to be processed:
a request for leave was answered
when the candidate was ready to retire.
That is what the Governor said,
and the Governor is an honourable English man
who spoke with royal authority;
and there were studies on top of studies
and studies of studies (consuming our aid).

What the Governor did not say
were his plans to cure the sore
since the service is in his purview and portfolio.
I hope he gets around to this
before he is ready to retire,
that he is not afflicted with like paralysis.

(Lord help us. Everybody just come an wash dem mout pan awe.)

The (our) celebrated poet, satirical at times, as can be, and would be expected, got support and reactions. One of our very active and knowledgeable, insensibly exiled journalist, with BBC and regional fame, was first to react.

Mike Jarvis

Agreed.
My thoughts as posted elsewhere.

“The Governor of Montserrat is right. The present model is wrong.

So, now that he has found it necessary to highlight it at a level beyond the local, the question for Governor Pearce is this:
“Guv, what are YOU going to do about it?”

On the outmoded and unnecessary time-consuming administrative requirements imposed on a micro local government in a micro territory, how much of this now needs a massive rethink?

How much needs to be referred to the administrative authority – as is done in the UK Nations and Regions, councils and local governments – so that the local administration and civil service can focus on the priority local issues?

Is it not time for a realistic new partnership with the UK central government, especially in Montserrat’s case?

With elections pending, this is something for current and aspiring Montserrat politicians to add to their ‘promise list’…or is it too big an issue?”

More reactions

Following also some brief, remarks, all considered worthy of mention, but selected:

With elections pending, this is something for current and aspiring Montserrat politicians to add to their ‘promise list’…or is it too big an issue?”

Estelle Howe

Estelle Howe

I lol bcuz I’m jus loving that last bit ” everybody jus come wash dem mouth pan awe”

Vernon Jeffers (former Minister of Government)

Quite an interesting “Tale”.
And they all in unison, exclaimed, “Lord help us”.

Joseph Jackman (just visited Montserrat)

Very well put. Sir Howard… my very short visit to the rock last week. Have a blessed, inspired and productive day.

Dunstan Lindesay

Sir Howard Fergus. The Conscience concurs with your sentiments. But we can’t wait to DIE before (they) fix it. We must find a way. OURSELVES.

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Bureaucracy and Consultancies -Heavyweight Governor!? Facebook

There was this retired public servant gentleman with whom I was having a discourse about some specifics about the state of Montserrat. He/we concluded that missing is an education which will come through information and discussions among people. So, he suggested the use of Facebook.

I promptly noted that Facebook, in its setting is good for rallying groups together, but in a general way does not reach as many people, certainly not all the people, often those for the masses to whom certain material and important matters are targeted. I reminded that Facebook is a great tool for what it is good for. I offered my usual description – It is about entertainment, gossip and mischief…varying information which should be always verified.

Insert Ads Here

But as suggested it is a good meeting place to exchange thoughts and information among those willing to participate.

It has been suggested often, that TMR in fact had the first Facebook back in the 90s.

It is here, that some posts and comments caught my attention that I felt compelled to share, especially with our readers who otherwise would not know about. The matter though only recently highlighted was first aired at Governor’s coffee morning with the media on September 26.

There he said on the matter of the public service very much the same as was later captured in that ZJB report where he was quoted as, “once again voicing his concern about the high level of bureaucracy in the public service…challenging them to be more result oriented…”

The Governor took aim at the number of consultancies done on the island and some of the needless processes in the public sector …that the bureaucratic red tape inherited from the U.K. is stifling development.

He said: “…there are consultancy reports analyzing previous consultancies going back decades; and there’s a consultancy on every conceivable thing you can think of; furniture, everything, air conditioning, the works. And then you add on top of that that if you want to go on leave, the process is quite stupendous.  The ‘Brits’, we’ve made a mess of a lot of things around the world. For a tiny island we have made an incredible mess. It has to be said says is something very unique and special to Britain… we but the amount of bureaucracy we reproduce is stupendous, and here we sort of incubated it; and if you want to go on leave you fill in a form and then it has to go round about 10 people. By the time it eventually comes back to you to confirm you can go on leave you’re near retirement…”

The Governor addressing that CARICOM meeting a few weeks ago, continues: “The level of bureaucracy, the level of complexity that’s expected on the village on a rock like Montserrat…it is the size of a British village on a relatively remote rock in the Caribbean. And we expect it to run its own port, run its own airport, run its customs, collect its taxes, organise its pensions, organise its civil service, to best practice, run a police force, run a Marine vessel, be ready to do search and rescue; do all sorts of financial services activities; and most recently, participate in arranging sanctions against Iran and Burma and maintain lists of things like dual use products that could be diverted into chemical weapons misuse. we’re expecting all of that of ourselves, of a village. And it ain’t ever going to happen, not in a month of Sundays will that happen, the model is wrong, we shouldn’t ever pretend otherwise. You can talk about it all, you can write about it…we can write all these reports and have all these committee meetings and at the end, nothing happens.”

At Facebook some important things get commented on. The foregoing was referred to and expressed as follows:

By Howard Fergus 

His Excellency is a heavy weight
in this Her Majesty’s dominion,
DfID’s footstool, and playground
of British civil servants over the years.
The Governor weighed against the service
recently, with damning clarity.

Bureaucracy was slow and paralytic,
communication was circuitous
with letters taking ages to be processed:
a request for leave was answered
when the candidate was ready to retire.
That is what the Governor said,
and the Governor is an honourable English man
who spoke with royal authority;
and there were studies on top of studies
and studies of studies (consuming our aid).

What the Governor did not say
were his plans to cure the sore
since the service is in his purview and portfolio.
I hope he gets around to this
before he is ready to retire,
that he is not afflicted with like paralysis.

(Lord help us. Everybody just come an wash dem mout pan awe.)

The (our) celebrated poet, satirical at times, as can be, and would be expected, got support and reactions. One of our very active and knowledgeable, insensibly exiled journalist, with BBC and regional fame, was first to react.

Mike Jarvis

Agreed.
My thoughts as posted elsewhere.

“The Governor of Montserrat is right. The present model is wrong.

So, now that he has found it necessary to highlight it at a level beyond the local, the question for Governor Pearce is this:
“Guv, what are YOU going to do about it?”

On the outmoded and unnecessary time-consuming administrative requirements imposed on a micro local government in a micro territory, how much of this now needs a massive rethink?

How much needs to be referred to the administrative authority – as is done in the UK Nations and Regions, councils and local governments – so that the local administration and civil service can focus on the priority local issues?

Is it not time for a realistic new partnership with the UK central government, especially in Montserrat’s case?

With elections pending, this is something for current and aspiring Montserrat politicians to add to their ‘promise list’…or is it too big an issue?”

More reactions

Following also some brief, remarks, all considered worthy of mention, but selected:

With elections pending, this is something for current and aspiring Montserrat politicians to add to their ‘promise list’…or is it too big an issue?”

Estelle Howe

Estelle Howe

I lol bcuz I’m jus loving that last bit ” everybody jus come wash dem mouth pan awe”

Vernon Jeffers (former Minister of Government)

Quite an interesting “Tale”.
And they all in unison, exclaimed, “Lord help us”.

Joseph Jackman (just visited Montserrat)

Very well put. Sir Howard… my very short visit to the rock last week. Have a blessed, inspired and productive day.

Dunstan Lindesay

Sir Howard Fergus. The Conscience concurs with your sentiments. But we can’t wait to DIE before (they) fix it. We must find a way. OURSELVES.