Agriculture secretary's job on the market: PM
The job of the secretary for the Department of Agriculture and Livestock is on the market and the challenge Prime Minister James Marape issued is simple – candidates outline a clear strategy to drive the sector forward and they have the job.
“You look at the sector and put your plan together; it can easily return to our economy K5 billion,” Mr Marape said.
“The challenge that I am extending to whoever wants to be secretary is to come up with a game plan which by 2022, with minimal government intervention, can double production in every revenue earning sector of our country, (and) you have the job.
“That’s the assurance I’m issuing to any one of you.
“Look into your own sector now, go back to your desk, come up with a clear blueprint on how we can double agriculture production by 2022.
“Let me encourage everyone of you that the time for complacency is up, time for day dreaming is up and time for fighting for jobs is up.
“If you want the job, outline your strategy on how you can drive the sector forward, lay out your strategy to us – everyone of you – (the) secretary’s job is on the market.”
Mr Marape made the challenge during a visit to the DAL headquarters, accompanied by agriculture vice ministers Henry Amuli (tree crops), Koni Iguan (livestock) and Pogio Ghate (coffee).
He was met and briefed by the acting secretary Daniel Kombuk, senior executives and chief executive officers of the commodity boards.
“(If) you want the secretary’s job, document your plan to get the sector up and running,” he said.
“I’ve heard Mr Kombuk speaking, anyone of you is clearly entitled to compete for the job but let’s get the process out of the way.
“We need to affirm leadership in this department.
“Politicians like me come and go but I need competent leadership in the department.
“I need leadership where you don’t depend on government.”
Mr Marape said the statistics outlined on the sector is show that the private sector is bringing the greater returns to the agriculture sector compared to government.
“Don’t come up with the same game plan that has not gotten us anywhere,” he said.
“We need to invigorate this sector by getting the right personnel in the right spot, in the right mindset, so that can come up and tell me, ‘Mr Prime Minister, by 2029 and 2030 coffee will be hitting this pitch, cocoa will be hitting this pitch, copra will be hitting this pitch’.”