Lee-Chin is dead right

Letters to the Editor

Lee-Chin is dead right

Friday, November 29, 2019

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Dear Editor,

The admission by Michael Lee-Chin about non-performing permanent secretaries in the public sector — next to sabotaging the current Government — is dead right.

I will go further to say not only permanent secretaries, but many of the civil servants themselves are actively working only for their political masters.

It is well known that many in the civil service sit in meetings with ministers of government that are supposed to be held in strict confidence, and as soon as those meetings are ended the Opposition knows everything that went on in those meetings.

Furthermore, there are well-known political activists in some critical ministries that are even trying to set up people that they believe are not of their political persuasion. That is a very well-known belief in the public service.

One of the worse things to have happened to this country coming out of the colonial period is the linking of politics to trade unionism. Jamaica is being held back because of the archaic structures that protect people in government jobs, whether they perform in the national interest or not. While many advances have been made since colonial days, our attitude to employment in the public sector has not. The employment rules are geared towards protecting the worse of the worse, and not the country.

Try firing a civil servant, save and except in the case of murder, and one will realise very quickly it is easier to keep them and shift them around in the public sector. So, at the end of the day, the problem is shifted from one ministry to another ministry, transferring the same problem across the Government. The transferring of the problem adds up to a colossal mess that cripples the public sector.

Is it any wonder why we have such sluggish growth?

Fabian Lewis


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