Ministries and performance assessments

 17 Feb 2014 - 2:16

Khalid Al Sayed

In the weekly Cab-inet session held last Wednesday, a very important decision was taken – that all ministries from now on must submit quarterly reports to the Cabinet about the implementation and progress of their various projects and plans, and inform it about obstacles to implementation, if any, and on the remedial actions and best solutions. 
It is an excellent step and has been widely welcomed as it will contribute to efficiency and transparency at the ministries. These performance reports will give an idea about the activities of these ministries and the progress of their projects. But there is an important question: will these reports be published in the media so that the public, too, is informed? The answer people are expecting is: YES. 
It is very important that these reports are not kept exclusively with the Cabinet because people need to evaluate and compare the performance of various ministries. They would like to find out if we are on track to achieve our National Vision 2030, especially since some ministries haven’t yet published their strategy. There is another question: when are we going to evaluate the national development strategy 2011-2016, since we have a new Cabinet and new mechanisms for efficiency? These quarterly reports, if properly implemented, can serve as indicators of the performance of ministries and ministers.
If the government can publish these reports, people can compare them with the situation on the ground, because every day we hear complaints in the media about various ministries and the different services they provide. The ministries and other organisations in the country need to be more open with the media and public about their activities and must share information freely. It is a good step and we hope we can see improvements and reforms in the communication system.