About those talkfests

Dear Editor,

Re: The challenges of our time 

I agree with this editorial on talkfesting and the most glaring examples are mainly in the government related initiatives.

When one government official thinks about an issue, it is consideration.

When two government officials consider the same issue, it is called a meeting.

When three government officials consider the same issue with the help of an overseas consultant, it is called a workshop.

When four or more government officials consider the same issue with the help of two or more overseas consultants, it is called a conference.

The funny thing is that the conference’s recommended course of action is exactly the same as that reached by the single government official thinking about the issue. Main difference though, is that the P.M. doesn’t get to have a chat with the government official in the first scenario, whereas he gets to open the conference and have morning tea with the overseas consultants. Plus a picture in the Observer newspaper. There are therefore these concrete and huge economic benefits to Samoa from talkfesting. NOT!!!

Our aid from overseas donors add to the talkfesting problem. They love to sponsor and spend money on conferences and workshops which produce lots of nice and complicated words but which mean little to those in the community who really need the help. 

The last part of this meaningless charade is the creation of performance indicators to measure the success of these overseas projects with the necessary talkfest component. Guess what? The whole process starts again.

If one person assesses it, it is a consideration.

if two people consider it, blah blah blah.

And so on it goes.

Is Samoa better off, and are my friends at the makeki earning more money as a result of these talkfests? The answer is a big fat ZERO, zilch.


Vai Autu 

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