Minister of Civil Service Hun Many said that the strategic goal of the civil service is to strengthen governance capacity and improve the quality of state institutions at both the national and sub-national levels. This involves reform, preparation and the launch of necessary legal documents to support the government’s public administration reform efforts.

Many stated the goal during a meeting with Kep Chuktema, chairman of the National Assembly’s (NA) Fourth Commission on Interior, National Defence and Civil Service Administration, according to an NA press release on December 11.

Chuktema said the meeting aimed to promote collaboration between the legislature and the executive to ensure an effective implementation of the government’s political programmes.

Many said the government prioritises the civil service, incorporating public administration reform into its Pentagonal Strategy-Phase I in the seventh mandate. The objective is to persist in strengthening capacity, governance and enhancing the quality of institutions at both national and sub-national levels.

“The goal is to strengthen, reform and prepare essential legal documents for the government’s institutional mechanisms. This is crucial to lead and implement key measures in public administration reform, including the review and restructuring of ministry units and executive mechanisms,” he said.

Many said his ministry has been assigned an additional role as the secretariat of the National Committee for Promoting the Implementation of Key Measures in Public Administration Reform, chaired by Prime Minister Hun Manet. The secretariat is responsible for ensuring the achievement of three tasks to enhance capacity, efficiency and success in public administration.

These tasks encompass enhancing the recruitment system, boosting public administration efficiency and establishing a system to incentivise accomplishments in public administration.

Cambodian Institute for Democracy president Pa Chanroeun said that promoting governance is important, and democratic governance is essential to both strengthening the capacity and integrity of officials of state institutions charged with the work of reforming the public administration system.

“Officials must possess the ability and high ethical standards to serve the people. The key to change lies in cultivating democratic values, where civil servants act as servants of the people, not their bosses,” he said.

He suggested that the government should establish an impartial administrative system, free from political party influences, ensuring cleanliness in each ministry as part of the initial phase of the Pentagonal Strategy.