Public servants work every day to earn the trust and confidence of New Zealanders, so the news that New Zealand’s public sector and judiciary has regained its position as the least corrupt in the world is a great start to the New Year.
It’s not always easy to assess trust and confidence, but the Corruption Perceptions Index released yesterday is one measure.
The index measures how corrupt a country’s public sector is perceived and New Zealand has regained its position as the least corrupt, sitting first equal with Denmark.
This means our public institutions are sound and reflects the work our public servants do to maintain their trustworthiness.
Work underway across the public sector to harness our ability to work collectively to solve complex problems, to improve the way we work with iwi and Māori communities and to build a more diverse and inclusive workforce will ensure New Zealanders retain confidence in our ability to serve them.
The public service legislative reforms support the shifts we’re seeking by better preserving and protecting the important principles of public service in this country: political neutrality, free and frank advice to Ministers, merit-based appointment, open government and stewardship.
We should never be complacent – we know that globally corruption and fraud is increasing in complexity as a result of more sophisticated technology.
But we should take a moment to acknowledge the hard work and integrity of our public servants that these results recognise.
Aotearoa/New Zealand’s number one ranking is a real testament to our spirit of service. Ka mau te wehi!