ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: President Dr. Arif Alvi has urged civil servants to transform bureaucracy into a service-oriented discipline by increasing its efficiency and outreach, especially to the underprivileged and underserved areas of the country, besides ensuring quality and swift provision of basic services at their doorsteps.
While addressing the participants of the 117th National Management Course (NMC) comprising of senior civil servants of different services and occupational groups at Aiwan-e-Sadr in Islamabad on Wednesday, the president said that the bureaucracy should focus on providing relief to the people by removing redundant impediments to the provision of hassle-free swift services to the people.
The president said that the bureaucracy should focus its energies, abilities, knowledge and expertise to provide relief to the people of Pakistan by adopting an open-door policy and improving service delivery to all parts, especially to the people of far-flung areas of the Country.
President Arif Alvi said that commitment to the welfare of the people should be the central pillar of bureaucracy, which most of the time did not require money but a change in attitudes.
The president highlighted the need to review Pakistan’s bureaucratic processes to bring in an exponential increase in its effectiveness, efficiency and outcome with the help of Artificial Intelligence-based technologies.
While replying to a question the president said that the bureaucracy needed to provide solutions to problems by identifying the issues, factoring in successful past experiences, benchmarking the best practices around the world and setting key performance indicators with a definite timeline for the achievement of targets.
The president said that Pakistan was facing population growth, which was putting tremendous pressure on its limited resources, however, out-of-box ideas and solutions could help better manage our population growth and convert this population into an economic and financial asset.
President Dr. Arif Alvi stated that out of 8 million pregnancies every year, half were unwanted, and by improving the availability of contraceptives these unwanted pregnancies could be reduced to half, which would help reduce population growth.
Replying to another question, he said that although provinces spent more than 20% of their budgets on education, however, the quality and quantity of the educational services required substantial improvement.
The president underlined the important role of civil bureaucracy in ensuring the allocation of resources and its judicial, purposeful and objective utilization to improve the condition of existing schools and create new facilities, both in-house and online and to bring over 20 million out-of-school children into the education system.
President Arif Alvi added that assistive technology and enabling conditions for over 20 million differently-abled persons can make them economically empowered and will ensure their mainstreaming.
The president also highlighted the permeation of Mental Health disorders and issues and said that over 24% of our population was facing mental health issues and underlined the need for taking necessary steps to reduce the stress level in society by taking appropriate time-bound interventions.
In addition, the president underscored that the world needed qualified and skilful human resources, especially in the IT and Cyber Security sectors, and if Pakistan managed to provide the required knowledge, education and skills to its youth, it could turn them into a highly productive human resource.
The president said that experience around the world had shown that hybrid and online education systems were more effective in terms of quality and cost and were playing a vital role for those students who could not acquire an in-house education.
President Arif Alvi further said that the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and Higher Education Institutes should benchmark the best practices of the hybrid and online education system to increase their reach to a large number of people without compromising the quality of education.
The president also highlighted the need to improve our justice system by removing backlog and making the provision of justice inexpensive, which would help in streamlining our systems and providing speedy relief to the people.
Currently, 117th NMC with 52 participants is in progress and its aim is to build the capacity of senior officers of civil services to help formulate and implement the public policy for the continuous improvement of governance at national and provincial levels.