Part Time Chairman, Public Service Commission
The Tonga Public Service delivers, on behalf of Government, a diverse range of programs and services to the population of Tonga. These range from strategic whole-of -government planning and policy formulation, to implementation of comprehensive service delivery to community and businesses. The Public Service Commission acts as the adviser to Government and the Lord Prime Minister on the management of the Public Service. The Commission, under the guidance of an appointed Chairman, ensures that the Service is managed effectively through the application of appropriate guidelines, frameworks, policies and standards. The Commission is further responsible for providing oversight over Government’s Public Sector Reform Programs. It plays a critical role in ensuring that Chief Executive Officers successfully articulate these management tools designed to guarantee that the Service operates in a transparent, consistent and robust manner. In achieving its outcomes, the Commission oversees the thirteen (13) Ministries and seven (7) Agencies comprising the reformed Tongan Public Service.
Purpose of Role
The Chairman is responsible to the Prime Minister for the following;
- Advise the Prime Minister on a regular basis regarding the performance of the Public Service;
- Monitor the effective enforcement and implementation of the Public Service Act 2002 as amended
- Call and preside over meetings of the Commission
- Carry out any other such functions as are imposed by or under the Public Service Act 2002 as amended.
In consultation with the Public Service Commission and through the Office of the Public Service Commission, the Chairman is charged with the following accountabilities:
- Provides high quality strategic advice and counsel to the Prime Minister and Cabinet Ministers on Public Service management matters, public sector reform, and emerging workforce management issues.
- Advise the Prime Minister and Cabinet Ministers regarding the implementation of public employment policies, principles and performance of the Public Service.
- Oversee performance assessment of Chief Executive Officers (in consultation with the relevant Minister) with regards to the performance of their functions, application of public employment policies and the management of their Ministries.
- Conduct or cause to be conducted inquiries and investigations into, and reviews of, the management practices of government.
- Regularly consult stakeholders on matters regarding the interests of Public Service employees.
- Carries out all duties, obligations and responsibilities as Chairman of the Commission as prescribed by the Public Service Act
- Discharges any other responsibility as deemed appropriate by the Prime Minister/Cabinet and the Public Service Commission.
PMS Information Article - September
"Our minimum is Excellence"
The month of September, 2016 commenced with PMS Awareness Trainings provided for the Department of Prisons in response to confirmation by the Commissioner of Prisons of assistance required.
The initial assistance had been provided to the Supervisory levels of the Department of Prisons on 11 August, 2016 and the awareness trainings scheduled were a continuation of the initial assistance provided.
The PMS Team took part in a General meeting on 05 September, 2016 with the Commissioner of Prisons, his Deputies, senior officers and Prisons Officers on the purpose of the PMS Awareness Trainings scheduled.
Assistance to the Department of Prisons took place on the 05 to 08 of September, 2016 spanning four (4) workshops involving its five divisions (Task Force, Custodial, Industrial, Female and Administration). This consisted of a total attendance of sixty two (62) employees including the Commissioner of Prisons.
The awareness sessions concluded with a short test at the end of each session and an overall outcome report provided to the Department of Prisons on the issues raised during the sessions together with a recommendation on the way forward for the Department of Prisons.
Mr. Viliami Konifelenisi Fifita of Hala'ovave, Tongatapu has been appointed as the new Government Statistician for the Bureau of Statistics. Mr. Fifita has been appointed effective as from 19 August, 2016 for a term of two (2) years.
Mr. Fifita is currently completing his Doctoral thesis on Poverty Analysis at Bristol University in England since October 2011. He holds a Master of Applied Statistics (2008) from the Australian National University, Australia and has also attained a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Pure Mathematics (2003) from Waikato University, New Zealand and a Bachelor of Science from the University of the South Pacific, Fiji (1995).
Mr. Fifita's career in the public service began in 1996 when he was appointed as an Assistant Teacher in the Ministry of Education. Since then, he has taken over senior positions in the Ministry including Senior Lecturer prior to his transfer and promotion to the position of Assistant Government Statistician at the then Statistics Department in 2004. Mr. Fifita was also a part time lecturer at the University of the South Pacific from 1997 to 2006 and also at the Tonga Institute for Higher Education for the Diploma in Information System and Diploma in Computer Science from1999 to 2007.
During Mr. Fifita's tenure as Assistant Government Statistician at the Statistics Department he assisted the Secretariat of the Pacific Community and some Pacific Islands in designing to poverty measurement and provide training for their various surveys which included Tonga Demographic Health Survey (DHS) 2012, Tonga Household Income Expenditure Survey (HIES) 2012, Solomon Islands DHS 2015, Tuvalu HIES 2015 and Fiji Labour Force Survey (LFS) 2015.