Boakai Launches Policy On Consultancy -Urges Spending Agencies To Scrupulously Adhere

MONROVIA: While it is true that the onus to govern rests with elected and appointed officials through the delegation of fiduciary authority, there still remains the need for specialized skills from private individuals and organizations—hired as external consultants—who often offer advisory services, articulate governance trends, provide technical and programming expertise, as well as evaluation functions. This important appendix of governance has over the years been abused and perverted, clouded with nepotism and perforated by cheat and fraud. From indications, it seems that is on the verge of being history with the launch of national consultancy policy in public service meant to infuse hygiene in Liberia’s bureaucratic ecosystem and to curb leakages. President Boakai on April 30, 2024 officially launched the updated version of the policy amid flowery speeches, calling for a scrupulous implementation and adherence by all ministries, agencies and commissions. The Analyst reports.

President Joseph Nyuma Boakai Wednesday, at the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Ministerial Complex in Paynesville, launched the National Consultancy Policy Guidelines, with calls on all spending agencies (ministries, agencies and commissions) to adhere to its scrupulous implementation.

The President said the scrupulous development that preceded the launch of the document, “marks a vital hundred-day deliverable accomplishment in our ongoing mission to optimize the utilization of consultancy services across government entities”.

“These guidelines, crafted with meticulous care, not only align with internationally accepted benchmarks to ensure the effective and prudent utilization of resources, but also present useful ammunition in our fight against waste and patronage,” Boakai said. “They also maximize the quality of professional services, promising a brighter future for government operations.”

According to the Liberian leader, the policy instrument is intended to empower the Civil Service Agency (CSA) in its task of overseeing the procurement of the services of independent consultants and consultancy firms.

He added: “It syncs with our government’s aim to streamline operations and ensure that consultancy resources are deployed effectively to address pressing government needs in line with global best practices.  It is our view that such well-crafted guidelines make up a smooth pavement for a competitive framework that guarantees equitable opportunities for Spending Entities seeking consultancy services in accordance with standards of fairness and transparency.”

He further said the goal is the establishment of standardized procedures and benchmarks for consultancy implementation across the Central Government, primarily focusing on efficient management to maximize value for money, mirroring practices observed in leading economies worldwide.

“I should remind all of us that strict adherence to key performance indicators outlined by contracting Spending Entities and the CSA remains paramount,” he asserted, indicating that in the clearest of terms, “this should reflect our commitment to accountability and results-oriented governance consistent with the ARREST Agenda”.

Call for Adherence

President Boakai further expressed his expectation which is that that all ministries, agencies, and commissions under the umbrella of the Civil Service Agency scrupulously adhere to these guidelines, ensuring compliance with globally recognized principles of governance and procurement.

In an effort to ensure widespread access to and familiarity with these guidelines, he called on heads of spending agencies to go the extra mile to share the guidelines with their respective human resource departments and project teams.

“For, in our calculation, collaborative effort is crucial to fostering a culture of transparency and accountability that resonates with international norms and standards,” he continued.

“It will also help us in rendering our governance mechanisms free from corruption. Together, let’s strive to optimize the impact of consultancy resources, bridging knowledge gaps, and advancing our national priorities with utmost effectiveness, in harmony with global efforts to achieve sustainable development goals.”

He extended is appreciation to the crafters of the policy, indicating that “your cooperation and dedication to excellence in governance are greatly appreciated.”

“They reflect our shared commitment to upholding the highest standards of professionalism and integrity. We are excited that the Civil Service Agency is acknowledging its responsibility and accountability for these policy guidelines and is demonstrating a commitment to their success, thereby aligning them with best practices for effective public administration and resource management.”

He also called for centralizing oversight and coordination under the CSA’s purview so that the public service can leverage its resources more effectively, ultimately driving greater value and impact across government initiatives.

“Let me thus urge you to embrace these guidelines wholeheartedly, recognizing their significance in advancing our shared goals of prosperity and progress in accordance with acceptable standards of good governance and accountability,” he said.

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