FCS champions overhaul of staffing structure

June 8, 2024 4:50 pm

Fiji Corrections Commissioner Dr. Jalesi Nakarawa has expressed concerns about the current staffing structure within the organization.

During his first official visit with Finance Minister Biman Prasad yesterday, Dr Nakarawa highlighted that the lack of a proper staff establishment has led to inconsistencies and inefficiencies.

He claims that the previous administration’s approach, described as a ‘climate of fear,’ resulted in unilateral decisions that were implemented without proper consultation or due diligence.

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Dr. Nakarawa highlights that under the former Commissioner’s directives, units were created and staff were deployed in a disorganized manner, severely impacting the operational integrity of the FCS.

He also stressed the urgent need to address the “slash and burn” approach that led to the trading off of positions and creation of new ones without proper evaluation, which has adversely affected staffing accuracy and budgetary allocations.

The Ministry of Finance acknowledged these issues, noting that the haphazard decision-making process made it challenging to ascertain accurate staffing figures.

Professor Prasad emphasizes the importance of regularizing and confirming all established positions and phase out temporary appointments, which are prone to misuse, and replace them with merit-based acting appointments, accompanied by appropriate allowances.

Prasad adds his Ministry is committed to supporting the FCS in cleaning up the current staffing mess and moving towards a more organized and efficient operational structure.

He urged the FCS conduct an urgent exercise to determine a clear and agreed-upon staff establishment for all corrections facilities and units.

The FCS will now embark on a critical review to establish a stable staff structure, essential for effective manpower planning and operational efficiency.

This exercise is expected to be completed by mid-July, ensuring that future manpower planning is based on accurate and jointly approved data.

A team is currently working on a comprehensive organisational review aimed to restructure and realign positions within the FCS to ensure the right person is placed in the right job based on merit.