May 24, 2018 By Elizabeth A. Kaine
The new Minister of Information and Communications has on Tuesday, 22 May, admonished staff of his ministry to be punctual, humble and firm.
Addressing staff at his maiden general meeting at the conference hall of the ministry, Mohamed Rahman Swaray said he believes in team work and open to new ideas, adding that he was prepared to tap into the knowledge of every staff of the ministry.
He called for cooperation and commitment and enjoined them to put on a new working attitude and culture to meet the president’s call on civil servants to be effective and efficient.
“I am expecting punctuality and regularity from staff members to enhance maximum productivity to achieve President Bio’s New Direction,” Minister Swaray said.
He said that during his few weeks in office he has learnt with dismay that officers, especially at the Information Communication Technology (ICT) Directorate, do not have official email addresses, which he described as unprofessionalism, adding that no sober minded organisation would want to do business persons without email address.
He urged the Communications Directorate to create official email addresses for every member of staff as it would help them move faster in their daily duties, while also expressing resentment over notorious use of social media during official hours and abounding their duties.
“I have entered into several offices during my brief stay here and I have seen staff members busy on Facebook and Youtube watching movies rather than doing their official tasks, which is totally unacceptable,” he noted.
He appealed to the Communications Director to find a way of minimising ‘frivolous’ use of social media by staff during working hours, thus proposing the creation of a platform where visitors could access information to abreast themselves with the activities in the ministry.
Staff at the ministry expressed dissatisfaction over poor welfare, lack of logistics and neglect, adding that their seniors no longer assign duties to them.
Reacting to staff concerns, Permanent Secretary Brima Sowa said he took over during the austerity measures imposed by the past government, noting that even the government budget allocations were fully disbursed to the ministry.
He promised staff that he would discuss with the new minister to see how best they could create conducive working environment for staff to enhance efficiency.