Good governance goes beyond managing cash

| 09/12/2013

(CNS): Good governance is not just about managing public finances, the governor said last week during Government Professional Development Week. Helen Kilpatrick was one of the presenters at the week-long event, organised by the government and the Cayman Islands Society of Professional Accountants, and she was also interviewed by Auditor General Alastair Swarbrick on the subject ofpublic sector governance. Kilpatrick said the three priority areas in relation to good governance are core values and a good business ethos; having clear accountabilities and systems; and holding people accountable by measuring performance and outcomes.

“The foundation of an efficient and trusted public service is good governance,” she said during the Q&A with Swarbrick. "Without this bedrock we cannot have performance management, accountability or the trust and confidence of citizens or investors."

The governor said that in the modern civil service leaders should be focusing on influencing others to achieve positive outcomes as it is more satisfactory than issuing directives.

“It’s all about being proportionate and having good processes, structure, and regulation,” she added, pointing to the various performance measures, including those that come from the people using public services.

“It’s a huge mistake to think that ‘good governance’ only relates to finance, because everyone, including politicians and members of the public, have a role to play,” Kilpatrick stated.

During the week-long event in which the financial secretary, the finance minister and the chair of the Public Accounts Committee and a host of international speakers all spoke about issues relating to public finances and accountability. The workshops and presentations focused on ethics, risk management, technology, project management, and the role of chief financial officers.

Managerial staff from government departments and authorities as well as private sector employees attended the event

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Comments (13)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I'm so tired of all the lip service on this subject.  Governor Kilpatrick you need to look no further than the heads in government and statutory authorities for abuse of office, from hiring their own family members to swanky new 4×4 vehicles bought out of public funds. You bury your heads in the sand pretending this hasn't happened but until you curtail this abuse, can you not see things will not get better. The supposed checks and balances in place to prevent this abuse fail miserably, usually because those who are supposed to speak up are too close to the heads. In the meantime employees are powerless to do anything and have to stand by and take abuse from these heads. Strip them of their power and make them follow process like any other goverment would. The anti corruption body is pretty much useless as is the standards for public life committee.

  2. Foreign Devil says:

    Good governance? Good luck with that Governor.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Good governance also relates to transparency whereby our government and its appointed agents account clearly for their actions to the ones that fund them, like they did in Operation Tempura.

  4. Anonymous says:

    It seems strange that the Governor did not mention the most basic element in good governance – obeying the laws that are in place. Then again maybe she is taking the 'baby steps' approach knowing that expecting the civil service to obey the law would be too much to ask in the short term.

    • Anonymous says:

      "…taking the 'baby steps' approach …"


      This is the correct approach because baby steps are all that some of the thin-skinned and egotistical "leaders" are capable of.

  5. And AnotherTing says:

    Mmm, Good Governance eh, if we are looking at maintaining Caymans reputation, then there should be good governance also in the private sector. Too often Private regulated Institutions fall afoul of having the necessary processes in place as well to the detriment of customers and shareholders  We have seen this in many cases over the years. And Another Ting.

    • Anonymous says:

      Good Governance has to start with Goverment and Government alone. Whilst I agree there are some sharp practices out there in some areas of business, most international companies have heavy internal regulation and safeguards.

      • Slowpoke says:

        Right, like what is a US$13 billion fine when everything is well regulated internally?  Did Jamie Dimon get fired?  Is he paying the fine out  of his pocket? Have they slashed bonuses?

      • And AnotherTing says:

        Havana most international companies have what? Scandal as in Europe, USA , stealing, money laundering bribes in International companies and you said what? Maybe you read a different media. And another Ting.

      • Anonymous says:

        Like HSBC you mean?

    • Anonymous says:

      You should put "And Another Ting" in capitals at the start of your post, rather than at the end.  It would save us having to read your embittered crap.