Monday, August 11, 2008

Little Napoleons

While the country seems to be incessantly embroiled in politicking, could it be possible that some quarters are "looting" the country's wealth and resources legally?

Both the Barisan Nasional government and the Pakatan Rakyat government depend on the efficiency and dedication of the civil servants for the "smooth functioning of the government machinery". Those who have watched "Yes Minister", a British comedy will be well schooled in the powers of the civil service and that it is a power unto itself.

Practically, you "cannot" sack civil servants. They have security of employment. Their decisions are almost unchallengeable and the one who goes to court with a judicial review application to do so knows the costs - both the legal cost and "the other cost". In short, the civil servant can make any decision that affects your life, your business and you stand in line - sometimes forever - to rectify it, if it is wrong.

It is because of their power that they have been referred to as "Little Napoleons", even by our Prime Minister, Dato' Seri Abdullah Badawi.

Considering their power, it is a major surprise that no major reform of the civil service has ever been embarked for the past 50 years. Politicians seem almost afraid to touch this sector. Why? Even though it is the act or the omission of the civil service that impacts most of the Rakyat's lives.

Once again, the duty of reforming the civil service must fall on the shoulders of the Saviour Citizens or Raperas. Think about it.

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