Two hundred vie for Govt. Boards

An Independent Selection Committee is considering at least 200 applicants from individuals applying to positions on Government Boards.

The committee choosing the representatives for the Government bodies sits under the Ministry of Public Enterprises (M.P.E.).

 M.P.E's Chief Executive Officer, Elita Tooala, said the recruitment and selection process is currently underway for the Directors. 

“There is an Independent Selection Committee (I.S.C.) that has been reviewing the applications,” she said. 

“Once the I.S.C. has completed their assessment they will make recommendations to Cabinet. 

“It is anticipated that the recruitment and selection process be completed before end of December this year.” 

The independent Committee of three members is Chaired by Oloipola Terrence Betham. The members are Narda Ah Yen and Tuu'u Amaramo Sialaoa, the former Chief Executive Officer of the National Bank of Samoa.

About the 200 applicants, Ms. Tooala said the I.S.C. considers all of them in the sense that each applicant has to be assessed against the skills and experience required for the Board they have expressed interest in. 

The C.E.O. was also asked about how each Chairperson is selected for the public bodies Board. 

She explained the I.S.C. scores shortlisted applicants against set selection criteria and makes a recommendation to Cabinet. 

In addition, she said the Public Bodies (Performance & Accountability) Act 2001 gives Cabinet the final say. 

For M.P.E. current financial year, a fund of $73,500 from the budget of $2.7 million is allocated for the independent committee that reviews applications for Board of Directors. 

According to Ms. Tooala, the distribution of the annual fund for the I.S.C. is based on “Cabinet’s approved policy for payment of Directors of S.O.E. Boards”. 

She said the payment is made fortnightly. 

In addition, she explained the I.S.C. is not only responsible for recruitment and selection of Directors but have other duties. 

“There are other duties in their terms of reference which includes reviewing of composition, skills set, directors performance framework, etc,” she said. 

Currently there are more than 185 individuals serving as Directors on 28 public bodies. 

The Board is responsible for “providing an efficient and quality service that is expected of it by the community and that Government’s interest as the major shareholder is protected” said Ms. Tooala. 

“The Board provides the strategic leadership necessary to ensure public bodies meet their performance expectations both those that are legislated and those that are policy driven. 

“One of the most crucial obligations the Board has is to protect Government’s interest.”

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