Brunei Darussalam has a unique and strong identity revolving around the Malay Islamic Monarchy (MIB) philosophy, and all national planning must be centred around it.
Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Haji Awang Abdul Mokti bin Haji Mohd Daud said this in his closing remarks on the final day of the 18th Legislative Council (LegCo) Meeting.
All policy planning and regulations – including when updating and drafting circulars and guidelines – will always be guided by the MIB concept to be practised and implemented in the government administration system for the welfare of the people and country as a whole, he said.
With regards to integrity-related issues tied to civil servants, the minister said, “The government views the matter seriously, and the Sultanate has long since had the 1961 General Orders, Circular Letters that regulate the Civil Service such as work ethics,” Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Haji Awang Abdul Mokti said.
LegCo member Yang Berhormat Perhin Orang Kaya Putera Maharaja Dato Paduka Awang Haji Abdul Ghani bin Pehin Datu Pekerma Dewa Dato Paduka Awang Haji Abdul Rahim suggested a stronger pledge or oath of government personnel, to which the minister said, “The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) through the Public Service Department (JPA) will plan the implementation procedures deemed appropriate to complement the existing regulations.”
Responding to a query on talent retention previously raised by LegCo member Yang Berhormat Iswandy bin Ahmad, the minister said “each ministry has been allocated a substantial budget for Civil Service capacity building skills”, and that the “PMO continues to actively implement the Civil Service Leadership Pipeline (CSLP) programme as one of the sub-initiatives under the Civil Service Framework that supports the aspirations of Brunei Vision 2035 as well as in ensuring the implementation of the succession planning in the Civil Service.
“CSLP aims to identify, develop competencies and retain capable, quality officers to improve organisational performance to become future leaders,” Yang Berhormat Dato Seri Setia Haji Awang Abdul Mokti said, further noting that the programme is an ongoing effort to prepare government officials to hold higher positions for the success of the replacement programme in the civil service.
The PMO, through the Civil Service Institute (IPA), will continue to provide appropriate programmes in line with the training needs analysis.
On the subject of re-examining the civil service pay scale, previously raised by Yang Berhormat Iswandy, the minister said, “The matter needs to be looked into in-depth and holistically as it will have an impact on the national finances, the private sector and even society in general.
“At the moment we are encouraging people, specifically job seekers, to work with the private sector and not rely entirely on finding employment with the government, which is increasingly limited. What is important is to have a strategic programme or project to increase productivity of service staff, bring efficient and effective services, and has the ability to contribute towards government revenue,” he said.
PMO, in cooperation with security agencies, will continue to formulate strategies to preserve the stability and defend national sovereignty, as well as link defence and diplomatic capabilities and national readiness in dealing with security threats, with regards to peace, harmony and stability of the country. This will include enhancing crime prevention efforts and strengthening capacity of stakeholder agencies in handling national and cross-border crises.
“This role of maintaining peace and harmony lies not only on the shoulders of security agencies, but is also everyone’s responsibility. Cooperation from LegCo members as grassroots leaders, mukim heads, village heads and the public in providing information to fight crime is very much needed and appreciated. This has greatly assisted the authorities, resulting in the eradication of crimes and apprehension of individuals involved,” the minister said.