Boakai Launches National Consultancy Policy Guidelines By: Julius Konton


The Civil Service Agency on Tuesday April 30, 2024 took another giant step in its drive to foster a comprehensive and robust reform process.  As part of said initiative the CSA through President Joseph Nyuma Boakai officially launched the National Consultancy Policy Guidelines to manage consultancies across Government. President Boakai speaking at the launch of the framework document said it is worthy cause in his government’s drive to sanitize the process of good governance system in the Country.  According to him, the launch of the policy framework and its scrupulous development, mark vital accomplishments of his government’s one hundred days’ deliverables, including the ongoing mission by his administration to optimize the utilization of consultancy services across government entities. He told the audience that the guidelines crafted with meticulous care not only alien with internationally accepted bench mark to ensure the effectiveness and prudent utilization of resources but it also present useful ammunition in the government fight waste and patronage. Moreover, he emphasized that the document will also maximize the quality of professional services thereby promising a brighter future for government operations.  The Liberian leader stressed that the policy instrument empowers the CSA in its size of overseeing the procurement of the services of independent consultants and consultancy firms.

Among other things, the Chief Executive stated that the goal of the policy is the establishment of a standardized Procurement and bench mark for consultancy implementation across all entities of government.  “It primarily focuses on efficient management, maximize value for money leading to practices observed in leading economies worldwide” , he noted.  The policy he pointed out also reflects his government’s commitment to accountability and result oriented government in line with the “ARREST” Agenda.  He wants all line Ministries and Agencies as well as Commissions to scrupulously ahere to it in order to ensure compliance to global recognized principles to governance process. In an effort to ensure wide spread access to familiarity with these guidelines, President Boakai encouraged Human Resource Heads and Project Teams to go the extra mile as collaborative effort fostering the culture of transparency and accountability that resonate with international norms and standards. The policy, he further noted, will help government in rendering its mechanism free of corruption.  “Together let’s strive to optimize the impact of consultancy resources, bridging knowledge gaps and advancing our national priority with global efforts to achieve the sustainable development goals,” President Boakai urged the audience.  He, at the same time, hailed the CSA family headed by Josiah Joekai and stakeholders as well as partners in the sector for their cooperation and excellence to governance. This he said reflects his government commitment to upholding the highest standards of professionalism and integrity.  He called on Liberians and actors within the sector to embrace these guidelines wholeheartedly while recognizing the significance in advancing the government share goal of prosperity and success.  ” These  policies are not meant to pleased donors and partners but to please the people of Liberia so that the donors and partners can respect us and know that Liberia is on the move to become a nation of integrity “, he emphasized.  According to him, to rescue is one thing and to put on track to redirect is another thing,  this he stated his government is doing and remains committed to it. Also Speaking at the official launch of the program was  the Director General of the Civil Service Agency Josiah Joekai who said his  new leadership  has embarked on such proactive course of action to address the systemic corruption issue and fortify the government’s institutional capacity, evidenced by the crafting of comprehensive policy guidelines to manage consultancies across the Central Government effectively. According to him, these policy guidelines were meticulously developed to ensure value for money and stringent performance of accountability for consultants hired. As part of this reform measure, the CSA Mr. Joekai told the gathering has proposed allocating a US$2 million cap on consultancy expenditures in the 2024 fiscal year. ” This prudent measure will lead to a cost-saving of USA. I million, thereby curbing excesses and rooting out corruption that allegedly plagued the consultancy landscape under the Weah’s administration”, he noted.  The CSA Head stressed that by instituting said  fiscal discipline and accountability mechanism, the government will safeguard public resources and pave the way for genuine progress and development initiatives to flourish. “Your presence at the launch of these policy guidelines marks a significant milestone in our journey toward prudent financial management and accountability”, the CSA Boss added. Mr. Joekai expressed he and his team’s  gratitude for the unwavering support and commitment to advancing the shared vision for progress and development as they remain steadfast in their resolve to realize the aspirations of the Liberian people,  the over-reaching goal was clear: he noted. Joekai indicated that to optimize the utilization of consultancy Sources, maximize value for money, and ultimately bolster the government’s objectives is key. According to him, before this initiative, these resources were frequently and allegedly misapplied on extending employment contracts that failed to substantially contribute to Spending entities’ operational efficiency or effectiveness. However, he pointed out that despite these measures, challenges persisted as some government agencies continued to engage consultants disproportionately, often without adhering to performance standards or transparent guidelines. The CSA head also disclosed that the Tax approach under the previous administration of former President George Manneh Weah led to an alleged pervasive misallocation of resources and a blatant disregard for accountability, resulting in the alleged squandering of public funds. “The repercussions of such negligence were stark evident in the financial losses incurred by the government just within the last fiscal year alone,  the Government of former  President George Manneh Weah misapplied a staggering USS6.1 million on so-called consultancy services that yielded negligible, if any tangible results. In other words, consultancy resources misapplied, and unaccounted for were wasted”, he told the gathering.  On the other hand, he assured President Boakai that the newly established policy guidelines framework developed by the CSA, a competitive framework has been instituted to level the playing field for all spending entities seeking consultancy services.  The framework he said aimed to eradicate disparities and ensure equal opportunities for entities to address knowledge gaps within their respective domains. Moreover, it sets rigorous standards and procedures governing the implementation of consultancies across the Central Government, he noted. It can be recalled in October 2020, the Government of Liberia took steps toward enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of its consolidating the oversight of consultancy services under the purview of the operations by Civil Service Agency (CSA). The strategic move he pointed out was aimed at centralizing the management and coordination of consultancy services of government agencies.  “By doing so, the government sought to streamline across various allocation of funds earmarked for consultancy services, ensuring they address critical governmental needs where existing staffing and capacities fall short”, he said.   The Head of the CSA maintains that a critical aspect of the framework is the emphasis on accountability and performance evaluation.  Under the new policy framework, he informed the gathering that consultants or consultancy firms are now required to meet key performance indicators established by contracting entities and overseen by the CSA, This shift in focus from mere employment extension to tangible results is pivotal in reshaping the consultancy Landscape within the government, he added.

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