The Public Service in Rhodesia

The nucleus of a public service was formed when the first civil appointments in the service of the British South Africa Company were made and on 11th January 1898 regulations to establish and define a public service were promulgated. These were known as “The Civil Service of Rhodesia Regulations, 1898”

In the early decades the established positions of the public service were staffed entirely by Europeans. The education system for Africans had to be started from scratch with very limited resources available from the small European population so that before WWII there were few Africans qualified for the service.  The growth of the white population after the war together with a developing interest in education by the African led to new opportunities.  By 1960 Africans started to be admitted to established posts and by the early 1970s they occupied about 1000 of these positions.  A civil servant is not permitted to belong to a political organisation or take part in political activities.

In a growing and developing country the Public Services must lead the way and it can only do so if it has competent managers at the helm. These managers are provided by the Public Services Training Centre through whose lecture rooms in a handsome building in Salisbury about a thousand students of both sexes and all races drawn from all parts of the country pass every year.
The school is in a building which was once the Governor’s Lodge situated on 11 acres of attractive woodland and gardens.  It is run by a staff of 12 enthusiastic and highly qualified training officers.

Rhodesia's government public service managers in training, 1970
Rhodesia’s government public service managers in training, 1970