PM opens delivery unit to monitor govt. services

Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit Chief Operating Officer, Mrs. Viana Gardiner conducts a tour of the new unit at the Office of the Prime Minister, May 8, 2018. (BIS Photo/Peter Ramsay)

Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis officially opened the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit (PDMU) Tuesday citing that the unit will focus on six key priorities as its initial mandate.

“My government has committed to improving service delivery, accountability and quality of life for our citizens and residents of our beautiful Bahamaland,” Dr. Minnis said at a press conference at the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday.

“To achieve this, deliberate and strategic steps, must be taken to ascertain the needs of Bahamian citizens and the trends of key indicators affecting their everyday lives.”

The priorities include: focus on the Over-the-Hill Rejuvenation Project; Land Reform; Energy Reform and Infrastructure; Ease of Doing Business; Education; and Safety and Security.

Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis addresses the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit Launch press conference at the Office of the Prime Minister, May 8, 2018. Also seated at the table, from left: Minister of Health Duane Sands, Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs Carl Bethel, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest, IDB Country Representative Florencia Attademo-Hirt, Canada’s Minister of International Development Marie-Claude Bibeau, and Chief Operating Officer/PMDU Viana Gardiner. (BIS Photo/Peter Ramsay)

The project is as a result of an IDB Public Financial Management and Performance Monitoring Reform Loan to The Bahamas, which is to increase the government’s capacity to monitor and implement key projects through performance management.

Viana Gardiner is the Chief Operating Officer and will have a staff of about 12.  It will be supported by a state-of-the-art information, communications and technology system to facilitate the collection, collation and analysis of data.

Dr. Minnis noted that Canada’s participation in the launch and sharing of its approach to results and delivery, is viewed as an act of friendship and cooperation. He also said his government believes that a management mechanism must also be established that underscores accountability, transparency, and results delivery throughout The Bahamas.

“Today, with the launch of the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit, we are one step closer to achieving, or enhancing, our collective performance in respect of all of these objectives,” he stressed.

The PMDU will follow international best practices seen in the United Kingdom (UK) and Canada in delivering meaningful and long-lasting results to its citizens.

“We are fortunate to have Delivery Associates, the firm subsequently formed by Sir Michael (in the UK), assisting us in setting up the PMDU,” he said.

“We are also pleased to be partnering in this initiative with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).  The IDB has made available to The Bahamas the Public Financial Management and Performance Monitoring Reform Loan Facility.”

Dr. Minnis commended the work of personnel within the Project Implementation Unit of the IDB and Ministry of Finance, who have advanced this project to date.

At the heart of The Bahamas model is data collection and analysis.  Provisions have been made under the loan facility to develop a state of the art Information and Communications Technology system to underpin the work of the PMDU.

“My government is committed to making decisions based on the analysis of relevant data, and believes that this will position us for growth in multiple areas,” the prime minister said.