Albertina Nakale Windhoek-The Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) is overwhelmed by the increase in disciplinary cases recorded due to misconduct by employees. According to the ministry spokesperson Romeo Muyunda, the main reasons for these cases stem from misuse of government vehicles, theft of government properties and insubordination, among others. He, however, could not provide the number of people who got dismissed due to these cases. The environment minister Pohamba Shifeta spoke about the high number of disciplinary cases in the ministry when he addressed the ministry staff on Monday, saying the issue has “become a matter of grave concern”. “I want to urge all of you to adhere to the set code of conduct, laws and policies as well as the Public Service Act. I encourage further that we observe the provisions of the Public Service Charter and derive our approach to service delivery thereof,” Shifeta noted. He called on the ministerial team to rededicate and recommit themselves to serving the nation as they have demonstrated over the years. Further, he said, there is a need to realign the ministry’s contribution in accordance with the needs of the system since the public service is undergoing some serious and exciting transformations that call for optimising service delivery within the resources that are available. President Hage Geingob recently called upon his cabinet ministers to adopt the 2018 theme “the year of reckoning” and as such, Shifeta says, it is expected of all civil servants to deliver to the expectations of people. He urged staff members to rededicate themselves and work harmoniously as a team as it is the only way they can achieve set objectives and goals. “I want to discourage laxity, laziness and other related unproductive behaviour and urge that we continue with the culture of hard work that you have demonstrated without any doubt.” Another area of concern to Shifeta is tourism, which he says has the potential to contribute significantly to the growth of the economy and the upliftment of people. He says despite the steady increase in the country’s tourism arrivals, he is concerned that the industry is not doing enough to attract more tourists to Namibia in terms of marketing and customer service. He said customer service is lacking in the Namibian tourism industry, adding that many employees in the sector are unfriendly towards visitors. Therefore, he called on the Tourism Competitive Advisory Council and the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Tourism Development to work hard to change this trend. He noted that the two bodies should work together and develop a training manual for customer service in the tourism sector to realise the service delivery and customer service concept. “It is my conviction that Namibians are hospitable people and therefore I encourage that all our citizens demonstrate this. Any crime committed against our tourists is a setback in the sector and has the potential to reverse our past gains,” Shifeta said. He urged the tourism sector to work together to rather give the visitors a welcome to Namibia, saying without proper customer service “we cannot be able to compete with other markets or make Namibia a preferred tourist destination when our people are angry or unfriendly”. Shifeta also bid farewell to his deputy Tommy Nambahu, who is now the deputy minister at labour, industrial relations and employment creation. He welcomed his new deputy Bernadette Jagger to the ministry.
2018-02-22 09:28:04 6 months ago