A Brief Opinion on the Administrative Reform of the Government
The author considers administrative reform in Estonia to be a necessity. Ten years of regained independence is sufficient to start improving the present administrative organisation where it is needed and retain what has proven useful in practice.
But regardless of present experience, it has not been pointed out which shortcomings of the administrative organisation are causes for unemployment, corruption, bureaucracy and alienation of the people from the state. The drawback of the reform is that its aims do not proceed from the interests of the people or existing possibilities. It has been impossible to set the aims of the reform because there is no adequate analysis of the administrative organisation. As the analysis of the situation is lacking, the result is as the power-holders wanted it – and it is far from corresponding to the interests of the people and the principles of a democratically functioning administrative organisation as stipulated in the European Local Government Charter.
As aimless reorganisation of administration does not guarantee necessary changes, it is high time to begin anew with preparatory work – to analyse the situation, specify goals and assess resources in order to create a democratically functioning systematic administrative organisation in the interests of the people.
Harri Õunapuu, born 1947, agronomist, Estonian Agricultural Academy 1971. Work: 1989-91 governor of Rapla county; Minister of Agriculture 1991-92, director of the Estonian Savings Bank 1993-96, director of the Estonian Insurance Company 1996-98, member of the Riigikogu 1999-. Affiliation: Estonian Centre Party, Estonian Hunters Union, other.