Public Service Ministry to invest $1B in training to meet national needs

-sum set aside in Ministry’s proposed $3B budget

Minister of Public Service, Hon. Sonia Parag has said the proposed $3 billion budgetary allocation for her Ministry would enable it to create training programmes and remedy the deficiencies in the public service.

The Minister made this statement during her interview on NCN’s “Budget in Focus” on Tuesday.

Minister of Public Service, Hon. Sonia Parag, speaking to the Department of Public Information (DPI).

Minister Parag said currently, the Ministry is hosting consultations which would inform its next steps, as it plans to provide quality training for the various sectors.  Some $1 billion would be used for training.

To this end, the Ministry intends to revamp the Bertram Collins College of the Public Service to meet national training needs.  Minister Parag said the College never fulfilled its mandate, as it was being used for political purposes. Referencing sentiments expressed previously by Vice President, Hon. Dr. Bharrat Jagdeo, she said, the College “was being used as a base for campaigning during the 2020 elections for the APNU and AFC.”

“Now, the intention of whatever this College or what the public was being led to believe, was not so at all. The College was not accomplishing what they were telling the public, they wanted to do.”

Additionally, an online learning institute would be established and geared to offer 20,000 scholarships over the next five years. This initiative would be realised through collaboration with the Ministry of Education.

It doesn’t take away from what the Ministry of Public Service would usually budget for new scholarships or awarding of other scholarships, but it is taking care of a national needs assessment,” she said.

Further, the Ministry will partner with the Education and Labour Ministries to award 4,500 online scholarships.  Those scholarships would be offered to persons with disabilities and others, in keeping with the Government’s commitment to inclusion.

“The manifesto was crafted in such a way that you listen to the persons on the ground. You know that there is a need for certain technical skill sets that do not exist and so, based on that needs assessment, this idea was born and so the $1 billion allocated will transform the public sector.

You will see the transformation in the skill set that we will be providing for the areas that are priority, relevant and most needed to function,” Minister Parag said.

The $383.1 billion National Budget was themed, “A Path to Recovery, Economic Dynamism and Resilience.”