When state employees begin their work on January 1, 2021 (next Friday), they will be taking a fresh oath not only vowing to serve the public but also to implement President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s election manifesto — “Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour “. This will be a new inclusion to the affirmation of the public service.
According to the Public Administration Circular issued by the Ministry of Public Services , Provincial Councils and Local Government, a brief ceremony should be held at each state institution where the head will lead the oath-taking ceremony.
In addition to create a disciplined, law-abiding and healthy society under the vision of “Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour”, the oath reads that the employees also will swear “to create a people-centric economy through development of physical resources focused on sustainable environment management through an accelerated development which ensures benefits to every citizen and also to create a well secured future for the Sri Lankans and future generation.”
However, the new additions were not included in the oath that was taken by public servants on January 1, 2020 shortly after the new President and the new Government took office.
Last year’s oath which goes as “I, as an employee paid by the public and partner of corruption free state apparatus,” has been modified to “I, an employee paid by the public being a part of a pure government.”
Another new inclusion this year is a brief speech by a resource person from the health sector. This emphasises the responsibility of each individual and society as a whole to prevent the spread of COVID- 19, which is the major health issue faced by the country at present.
The requirement for the public sector employees to take oaths was first introduced during the Mahinda Rajapaksa presidency in 2008.