PUBLISHED — 27th, June 2024

Uganda marked the 13th edition of Africa Public Service Day on June 27, at Kololo Ceremony Grounds under the theme "Empowering a Citizen-Centered Public Service for an Inclusive and Thriving 21st Century Africa."

President Yoweri Museveni who was represented by the Vice President Jessica Alupo as chief guest at the event underscored the significance of public service in Uganda.

In his speech delivered by Alupo, President Museveni acknowledged both the challenges and successes faced in this sector.

He highlighted the significant improvements in service delivery due to the automation of services across various government organizations, which has made them more responsive to their clients.

Museveni stressed that the NRM government is a product of the people's struggle, with all public sector reforms focused on ensuring access and affordability of services for the common man.

"We must stop working in cliques and adhere to our service delivery standards," he stated. "It's crucial to reduce barriers to accessing services, move resources to the community level, review business processes regularly, and automate all services. By doing this, we will ensure continued steady growth."

The celebrations included various activities such as blood donation drives, a sports gala, cleaning of Parliament Avenue, and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives like the construction of a perimeter wall at Shimon Demonstration School by State House.

Additionally, various government entities showcased their services at the grounds while local governments held open days.

The Minister of State for Public Service, Grace Mugasa, and the Principal Judge, the Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet, Lucy Nakyobe, along with Permanent Secretaries and were also in attendance.

Nakyobe emphasized that public service is the backbone of any nation, translating government policies into action.  She noted that service delivery across sectors has improved significantly, with digital adoption being a major game-changer.

She acknowledged the persistent challenge of corruption and impunity, calling for a rigorous fight against these evils to further improve service delivery.

"Public service is at the heart of our social contract," Nakyobe said. "We must listen to the voices of the people and respond to their needs. Empowering our public service to be more inclusive and citizen-centric is essential."

Catherine Bitarakwate, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Public Service, reiterated that the government exists to serve the people and enhance citizens' overall well-being.

She urged all government institutions to implement public service reforms in line with the day's theme, focusing on customer care, building partnerships, automating services, cutting unnecessary delays, and promoting the one-center concept and staff welfare.

Bitarakwate also called for the revival of barazas to ensure accountability and citizen engagement.

KCCA staff led by the Executive Director Dorothy Kisaka marched from City Square to Kololo and exhibited various services offered by the authority, including urban farming methods, online services, reflecting KCCA's dedication to innovation and efficiency in service delivery.

In her remarks, Kisaka highlighted several key areas of emphasis for KCCA: continuing the fight against corruption, ensuring quick service delivery in health facilities, roads, and markets, eliminating the culture of working in cliques, increasing the use of digital solutions and enhancing connectivity with citizens, and promoting the establishment of one-stop centers.

The celebration concluded with a reaffirmation of the commitment to building a people-centric, inclusive, and technologically advanced public service for the betterment of all citizens.

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