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Blog
Appointment without Probation

The presidential election ended on the 2nd January, 2009. President Atta-Mills has been sworn-in to recruit people to deliver his advertised programme for the country.

The appointment of people to positions such as Ministerial, Heads of Public Institutions, Board of Organisations, ect for the first time may result in successful delivery or with challenges. People could have enough qualifications and experiences, but the ultimate issue is the intention they present themselves to pick up appointments in different political environment. This may be for the fame of it. Just like Maslow explains, people might have gone passed their basic and safety needs....... etc and now want to be famous (self actualization). Others may pick up appointments under different capacity because of money (nokofio) or to replenish their Bank Accounts after depleting them for political campaign. Achievers may also present themselves to help fulfill the vision of their boss (the president) etc.

Some the factors mentioned above could make experienced and well established people fail in their political positions.

It is therefore prudent that people are made to understand that, for any position that they are appointed to, they would be on trial (probation) for a stipulated period. Appraisal for the stipulated period is necessary as it motivates the appointees to stay focus during their contractual period. Government should however muster courage to terminate the appointment of those who are not performing and spur on those excelling.

Section 98 (d) of the labour law 2003 admonishes every employer and employee to agree on the period and conditions for probation.

I therefore suggest that Ministers and Government appointees should have probational period. Although I have not seen appointment letters of Ministers and other Government appointees before, I encourage appointment committees not to over-look this important clause in contract letter.

Performance appraisal at a specific period before confirmation is good. It is motivating for job holders to know that the employer is interested in what they are doing. This would also help to design training to correct their inefficiencies.