Monday, June 27, 2022 | Dhu al-Qaadah 27, 1443 H
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EDITOR IN CHIEF- ABDULLAH BIN SALIM AL SHUEILI

Reforms not free of cost

Broad powers are required for the executive departments to increase the work efficiency in the state’s administrative apparatus. Without this, it is not possible to evaluate the performance of employees in their positions. This is essential to control the pace of work and improve it.


This is the reason; amendments were made in the provisions of the administrative court. It is just one example of the action being taken to achieve Oman’s Vision 2040. To ensure that the work in government organisations is not disrupted, some employees get bigger responsibilities than their professional capabilities and low level of efficiency. This opens wider horizons for state agencies to define responsibilities and carry out administrative evaluation of each employee according to their work tasks, performance and professional competence.


There is no doubt that the improvement of the administrative work of the state requires clear and transparent practical steps. Broader powers should also be given to the administrative bodies so that they can carry out reform in the work structures and determine the role of the government organisations. They should not become subject to personal aspirations. There should not be any obstacles in the smooth flow of work to achieve its objective and serve its real purpose. At a time when we demand improvement in administration as a necessity dictated by reality, we find that there are restrictions which limit the powers of government organisations and hamper their efforts made to achieve the desired development. Efficiency does not necessarily mean seniority or old age of an employee. Rather, there are other very precise criteria to determine the best work performance as required by a common man.


Suppose for the sake of argument, if transfers were made within departments and an employee was appointed who passed the personal competency standards with distinction, holds a high qualification and has high English language skills, and he is replaced by the head of the department or the deputy director, what will happen next. They file cases before the Administrative Court. The court suspends the decision and the status quo is maintained. In such a case, how do we expect the party to improve its performance while at the same time making their hands tied.


Today, an employee is asked to reflect practically the goals of his organisation and his office, and if he does not know that there is an accurate assessment which is done based on the data of what was expected from him, then he will not move a finger and will continue to routinely wait for promotion done in view of his experience and seniority. But this does not serve the purpose of the promotion or upgrading of the position. This is the major obstacle which is faced by the state's administrative apparatus over the past 50 years.


We should notice how companies operating in the country and the world in general work. In these companies, we see that the employee’s efficiency rate is very high. Making the amendments does not detract from the powers of the court under certain laws, rules, and regulations. The legislature and government agencies are more knowledgeable than others about what they need to keep pace with the global development in this area.


There are certain administrative decisions and orders given in the past which were not fair. The court ruled to annul them. But on the other hand, most of the rulings restricted administrative work and tied the hands of officials in improvement of the job according to the tasks and competencies given under certain frameworks and legislations. Therefore, the change in laws is the best option.


We hope that this amendment will bring positive changes in the work, increase efficiency and capacity development. This will prove to be a starting point for advancement of the state’s administrative apparatus. It will accelerate the pace of work by opening wider and broader horizons for employees to compete honestly in offering the best. This is in the interest of work in all state agencies.


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