MSJ Political Leader David Abdulah has effectively tendered his resignation from the Economic Development Advisory Board on Thursday 05 April, 2018. This has been the fourth resignation following the resignation of the Chairman, Dr. Terrence Farrell, in early January of this year along with two other members.
In his letter he stated the importance of such agency and that the establishment of the Economic Development Advisory Board, reporting to the Prime Minister as set out in the Terms of Reference is a vital mechanism in the process of arriving at national economic policies. Also that good “economic policies” are never ever confined to the narrow areas of quantitative economics nor are they are specific only to fiscal and monetary policies.
The work of the EDAB must therefore also connect with social policies as well as matters relative to good governance.It is also vitally important that the work of the EDAB is linked to the work of Government Ministries, Statutory Bodies, State enterprises and other agencies, especially since the EDAB by its nature and terms of reference ought to be looking at the “big picture” and thus engaged in the identification of strategic approaches to economic development.
Mr. Abdulah laments that regrettably in the two years of work the interaction with other bodies was not always a reality as there remain a culture of silos and “power bases”. This, together with a lack of direct engagement with and/or the slow response to the recommendations/projects and Advisory Notes submitted by the EDAB led to it being less than optimal in terms of results. An EDAB must be a functional entity, not merely a Committee that gives the public the perception that a government is being proactive in policy development and long term planning.
Adding to the hindrances already faced compounded by the resignation of its chairman, the EDAB has been in limbo for the past three months and not having received any communication from Cabinet as to the future standing or work of the EDAB, He could not in good conscience continue to be a member of the EDAB.
Mr. Abdulah thanked the Prime Minister for the opportunity to give public service as a member of the EDAB and also conveyed his gratitude to the very hard-working staff of the EDAB’s Secretariat who operated at all times in a very professional manner and at a high standard, in spite of the many, very real challenges which they faced. He extended his appreciation to all colleague members of the EDAB and to former Chairman, Dr. Farrell, for their time, efforts.