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– says Gov’t’s actions will not go unnoticed
Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon has accused the Government of politicising the Public Service following its appointment of new Permanent Secretaries on Thursday.
In a statement, the Opposition Leader said the appointment of eight new Permanent Secretaries while the substantive Permanent Secretaries, who appointed by the Public Service Commission are still performing their duties, represents the politicising of the system of Government.
“These sitting Permanent Secretaries were not consulted about the move and appointment of these new PS’s… This insertion of persons into the top level of the Government Ministries has effectively politicised the system of Government which is meant to provide neutral service to the people of Guyana.
It kills the legitimate expectation of Public Servants in the system and creates disenchantment among Public Servants who saw a career in Public Service,” the statement said.
Harmon said that Permanent Secretaries are the administrative and accounting heads of Government Ministries.
“The PS stands between Government regulation and Ministerial excesses. He or she is expected to be aware of all Government regulations, the preparation, explanation and expenditure of a budget involving several programmes and billions of taxpayers’ dollars. He/she also has to report to the Public Accounts Committee of the Parliament,” he said.
On Thursday, the Office of the President announced the appointment of eight Permanent Secretaries within the Ministries of Amerindian Affairs, Home Affairs, Public Works, Social Services and Social Security, Housing and Water, Labour and Tourism, Industry and Commerce.
The new appointees are Malcolm Watkins (Ministry of Health), Sharon Hicks (Ministry of Amerindian Affairs), Mae Toussaint Jr. Thomas (Ministry of Home Affairs), Vladim Persaud (Ministry of Public Works), Shannielle E. Hoosein-Outar (Ministry of Human Services and Social Security), Andre Ally (Ministry of Housing and Water), Bishram Kuppen (Ministry of Labour) and Sharon Roopchand-Edwards (Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce).
Additionally, Harmon said Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Karen Boyle was superseded by her Junior, Dr. Singh when Dr. Shamdeo Persaud demitted office as Chief Medical Officer. He also highlighted the appointment of two advisors to the Minister of Health, Dr. Bheri Ramsarran and Dr. Leslie Ramsammy. “So now at the Ministry of Health you have a PPP party group running the affairs of our Public Health system; no wonder the Coronavirus Pandemic is going out of control while we spend taxpayers’ dollars to feather the nest of PPP old boys’ who do nothing, but the State has to pay them and give them all sorts of facilities to live the high life,” Harmon said.
The Opposition Leader said the actions of the Government “will not go unnoticed and without a response in and out of Guyana”.