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Implementation unit to enhance Virgin Islands government reform

By April Glasgow

CHARLOTTE AMALIE, USVI – The National Unity Government of the Virgin Islands has established a unit to support the delivery of the Commission Of Inquiry (COI) report recommendations and ongoing government reform.

The COI Implementation Unit will assist in coordinating the overall delivery of the COI recommendations, which includes providing support to ministries in developing work plans for the delivery of recommendations, assist in drafting policy directions, and the development of new programmes and systems.

The unit is also responsible for preparing monthly progress reports, reports on specific work programmes, and reports to identify key issues associated with implementation and suggest remedies. The unit will report directly to the permanent secretary Carolyn Stoutt Igwe in the premier’s office, who chairs the COI Implementation Steering Committee.

Stoutt Igwe said: “The formation of the Implementation Unit is another milestone towards successful government reform. The unit affirms government’s commitment to the comprehensive and timely implementation of the COI recommendations and facilitates the critical participation of ministries and departments.”

Stoutt Igwe stated that the Implementation Unit will work very closely with relevant ministries, departments, and statutory boards, along with other implementing partners including the governor, cabinet ministers, and House of Assembly members.

“The close working relationship safeguards against duplication of efforts, allows for quick responses and corrective action if any bottlenecks or problems are encountered, centralises the monitoring and reporting of progress and facilitates better coordination and communication between responsible implementing parties,” the permanent secretary stated.

The unit began full-time operation on August 15 and is headed by director, Hadassah Ward. It is comprised of officers with expertise in strategic planning and implementation, procurement, policy analysis and development, monitoring and evaluation, communications, research and administration. The unit will be in operation for an initial period of six months, with the possibility of subsequent extensions following an internal review.

Ward is a former senior public officer, having served as private secretary/clerk, executive council at the governor’s office following her appointment as senior administrative officer in the deputy governor’s office. She served as the deputy director/acting government representative at the BVI London office and product development manager/liaison at the BVI Tourist Board London Office. Ward is also a former deputy director and director of the BVI Tourist Board.

Community meetings on government reform

Stoutt-Igwe thanked residents in the various communities who attended the public meetings to learn more about the Framework for the Implementation of the Recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry Report. She indicated that the remaining meetings which had to be postponed are being rescheduled and the dates will be released shortly. Additionally, meetings will soon be announced to discuss immigration reform that is also one of the areas being addressed under the framework. Residents are reminded that they can email their queries, concerns and recommendations to [email protected].

The Government of National Unity is forging ahead with good governance, in line with the ‘Framework for Implementation of the Recommendations of the COI Report and Other Reforms’. The formation of the COI Implementation Unit affirms Government’s commitment to government reform, and is part of enhanced cooperation between the premier’s office and the governor’s office.

Read the Framework



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