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‘Still no answers’ on civil service vacancies – GSD

The GSD has demanded answers to its questions over the number of vacancies in the civil service, as the row over the issue rumbled on yesterday.

In a statement the GSD highlighted the bulletin previously circulated to by the GGCA Union to its members.

This states: “The Chief Minister reiterated that the previous commitment made to maintain the civil service compliment as at the December 9, 2011 would be upheld, so this process will not result in any redundancies or in a cutback in the number of civil servants”.

The civil service complement in 2011 was significantly less than the complement in 2015, the GSD added.

The question, therefore, is whether the Government intends to cut the 2015 complement in real terms by not filling some or all of the 177 vacancies that currently exist, the GSD said.

“This would explain his assurance to the GGCA that his Government will ‘maintain the civil service complement as at December 9, 2011’ as opposed to 2015 levels,” it added.

The GSD further stated that AA vacancies were advertised over a year ago and many people have applications still pending.

“People deserve to know what the Government intends to do about their applications,” the statement read.

The GSD said that if the economic situation does not allow the Government to fill the 177 vacancies in the public service that currently exist, then the Chief Minister, Fabian Picardo, “should have the courage to say so”.

“He may be justified in not filling those vacancies, but politics is about taking and defending decisions,” the GSD said, adding that not answering the question simply creates the impression that the government has something to hide.

The GSD further hit out at Mr Picardo over the nature of his statements on the subject.

“He just cannot focus on the issues without peppering his statements with insults,” the GSD said.

“It is a far cry from his mantra at the time of his election as leader of the GSLP in 2011 that people wanted a contest of ideas and not political character assassinations,” it stated, adding that it would not be drawn into that kind of exchange.