KIGALI-Rwandans yesterday joined the rest of the world to celebrate the United Nations’ Public Service Day aimed at promoting the value and virtue of service to the community.
The day was celebrated with visits to public offices by various sections of the population.
During the tours, members of the public asked questions on the workings of the public service.
Speaking to The New Times, the officer in charge of public service in the Ministry of Local Government, Alex Ntagungira, said celebrations climaxed with the awarding of civil servants and journalists.
“We received complaints, comments and inquiries about public service, as the official celebration of the day,” he said. “We will award outstanding public servants and journalists, to encourage the quality of Rwanda’s public service”
Tanzanian coastal city of Dar-es -Salaam hosted the United Nations celebrations.
In a statement, UN Secretary-General Mr Ban Ki-Moon said this would be the first time Public Service Day would be commemorated in Africa.
He said Public Service Day is in honour of those who accepted the responsibilities of service to humanity and who contributed to excellence and innovation in public service institutions.
“Governments and good governance play a central role in addressing the complex challenges of our times. Whether it is climate change, the economic crisis, unemployment, health pandemics, or poverty eradication, public servants and good governance are often the first line of defence,” Mr Ban said.
“Implementation of the internationally agreed development goals, including the Millennium Development Goals, also relies heavily on the work of public servants – their leadership, their capacities, their innovations in the delivery of vital services”.
Ban said the winners of the 2011 United Nations Public Service Awards embodied the essential building blocks of good governance: integrity, citizen participation, respect for diversity and gender equality and effective knowledge management, particularly through the use of modern technologies. I commend the winners for their commitment to their countries and communities.
He urged all public servants from around the world to work in the same spirit and strive for greater impact in their important work of building a better life for all.