Prime Minister, Dr the Right Honourable Keith Mitchell says there’s nothing amiss with the re-assignment of Permanent Secretaries or any other public officers.
Responding to a question on Monday’s Beyond the Headlines programme on the Grenada Broadcasting Network (GBN), Dr Mitchell said Ministers of Government are also re-assigned from time to time, and he too, has changed portfolios.
The question spoke specifically to what was reported in the news as the planned re-assignment of the Acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Findley Jeffrey and linking this to matters relating to the industrial action taken by teachers last year and the resulting salary deductions made by government.
Setting the record straight, the Prime Minister said the Public Service Commission is the body responsible for moving or re-assigning public officers and he is unaware that any such confirmation has been provided by that body at the time.
He added, “Recommendations are made continuously to move Permanent Secretaries and other public servants from one ministry to the next. Almost every Permanent Secretary or public servant in various sections of the service has been moved at some time in their period of service. Movement from one area of service to another, as long as you are not demoted, is a normal thing.”
Dr Mitchell further stated that there could be several moves on the horizon based on his communication with the Cabinet Secretary. “The Cabinet Secretary informed me that she communicated officially with a number of Permanent Secretaries, eleven of them, about different areas. I don’t know that any one person in the service can claim to be victimised when 11 persons may be moved.”
Dismissing claims of possible victimisation, the Prime Minister said, “No one is married to an area of the public service. The Public Service Commission has a responsibility to manage the public service. They can take decisions to give support to that philosophy and that can happen at any given time. I want to make that clear, no one is married to a position in the public service.”
The leadership of the public service, the Cabinet Secretary can make recommendations to the Public Service Commission, for the movement of public servants as enshrined in the Grenada Constitution.
Office of the Prime Minister