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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday awarded appreciation certificates to the top 10 federal ministers, advisors, and special assistants, in recognition of their best performance under his government, with Communications Ministry, headed by Murad Saeed getting the first position.

However, some important ministries including Finance, Information and Broadcasting, Defence, Foreign Affairs, and Kashmir Affairs could not make it to the list of top 10.

The top 10 ministries recognised for their performance at a ceremony held here on Thursday include Ministry of Communications (Murad Saeed), Ministry of Planning, Development and Special Initiatives (Asad Umar), Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division (Dr Sania Nishtar), Ministry of Federal Education and Professional Training (Shafqat Mahmood), Ministry of Human Rights headed (Dr Shireen Mazari), Ministry of Industries and Production headed (Khusro Bakhtiar), National Security Division headed (Dr Moeed Yusuf), Ministry of Commerce (Abdul Razak Dawood), Ministry of Interior (Sheikh Rashid Ahmed), and Ministry of National Food Security and Research (Syed Fakhar Imam).

The ministries with a performance score of 80 percent and over were also highlighted in the function.

Performance of ministries to be evaluated

Addressing the function, PM Imran Khan emphasised the essential importance of improved ministry performance in achieving the country’s self-sufficiency goal. The government is entirely focused on guaranteeing good governance and that the primary purpose is to improve people’s lives, he added. He that performance evaluation is critical for improving the bureaucracy.

He stated that in the future, incentives will be increased for the highest-performing ministries. He urged for non-traditional approaches to economic difficulties.

PM singled out Murad Saeed for praise as his ministry came out on top despite his young age. The premier hailed the initiative as a great opportunity since every ministry would get to know how much the others worked. “Our ministries will get incentives to work hard, the more we publicise this,” he added.

The premier said that to assess the qualitative performance, weightage should be given to the ministries that kept ahead the national interest.

The prime minister announced that the ministers who keep on working better will be given benefits, adding that if there is no encouragement, there is no interest in work.

The prime minister further said that it is the government’s topmost priority to make the lives of the citizens better and to do so increasing exports, finding import substitution and poverty alleviation were significant areas of national interest.

He mentioned that reforms had been made regarding the powers of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) that allowed the bureaucrats to take initiatives.

Imran Khan said quarterly review of the performance of ministries was a step to develop among them a sense of competition to give their best.

The prime minister told that the government’s agenda was transformed into an actionable form through the performance agreement system.

The premier said 1,090 targets had been set by the ministries, of which, 424 would be completed this year, including 207 related to governance and 100 to infrastructure.

Giving his recommendations, the premier said the criteria should be further refined and increased weight should be given to how can a ministry improve its performance to benefit national interest and to bringing “out-of-the-box solutions” to common problems.

The premier said the appraisal would be a quarterly affair, bonuses would be given on its basis, also adding that in future, the top 10 ministries should not be announced beforehand, so as to ensure the attendance of all federal ministers.

The Prime Minister’s Office said the rewards were being distributed in accordance with “The Performance Agreement” signed with the federal ministries, in which, targets were set for them.

It said the agreement would help to improve performance, meet targets, address public issues, formulate effective policy, and compile the data needed for good governance.

The PMO added that the main purpose behind the agreement was to evaluate the performance of ministries, enforce a system of rewards and penalties for government officials and improve service delivery.

Federal Minister Fawad Chaudhry, whose own Ministry of Information and Broadcasting was missing in the top 10, congratulated the award recipients.

Explaining the snub of his ministry, he said performance was measured on the basis of implementation of projects that the ministries submitted to the PMO.

Chaudhry added he had modified some projects which would provide more positive results next time.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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