British Virgin Islands

Saturday, Oct 23, 2021

Political advisors for ministers approved by Cabinet!

Political advisors for ministers approved by Cabinet!

In an online meeting chaired by His Excellency, the Governor John J. Rankin, CMG, on July 8, 2021, Cabinet considered and granted approval for ministers and junior ministers to be assigned Ministerial Political Advisors.

The position will attract no more than $120,000 per year and will be similar to the United Kingdom model where the Premier would be assigned no more than three advisors and each other Cabinet Minister, and Junior Minister would be assigned no more than one advisor.

"The Terms of Reference for the Ministerial Political Advisor to include research and analysis, assisting in speech writing for the Minister, and other areas as outlined in the job description," the Cabinet statement said.

It was also decided that the tenure of each Ministerial Political Advisor, who will be hired as an independent contractor, to be the same as the tenure of the Minister to whom they are assigned, will be "subject to all public service laws, regulations and policies during their tenure, save and except where research, advice and other support to the Minister may incorporate political considerations into their analysis, advice, speech writing etc. in a manner that would not be permissible for a permanent public officer."

Cabinet considered and granted approval for ministers and junior ministers to be assigned Ministerial Political Advisors at a virtual Cabinet Meeting chaired by His Excellency, the Governor John J. Rankin, CMG, on July 8, 2021.


$120K per year


In the meantime, the advisors would receive a contract that would not exceed $120,000, equivalent to $10,000 a month, "in accordance with the established pay bands."

"Each contract for each Ministerial Political Advisor does not cover gratuity payments, annual leave and sick leave; each Ministry will allocate payment of remuneration for Ministerial Political Advisor under their Consultancy vote, and payments for the Ministerial Political Advisor to Junior Ministers will be borne from the Consultancy vote of the Premier's Office."

Cabinet also approved to waive the tender process for the advisors' post to be "contracted for any tenure that allows the cumulative compensation to be no more than $120,000.00 per annum."

Adhere to code of conduct


The Ministerial Political Advisors would be required to adhere to the Code of Conduct for Ministerial Political Advisors, and there will be an Integrity Committee for that new position.

"The Integrity Committee for Ministerial Political Advisors would have the authority to call and question Ministerial Political Advisors on their adherence to the Code of Conduct for Ministerial Political Advisors or matters of conflicts of interests, and that the Committee may submit a report to the Premier for his or her consideration," the statement said.

The committee will comprise of the Permanent Secretary, Premier's Office as Chair; Permanent Secretary, Deputy Governor's Office; and one of the four other Permanent Secretaries in rotation each years and the advisors would be required to declare any private interests that they may hold in any matter that may be deemed relevant to their work, upon assumption of duties and periodically as circumstances may require.

The private interest disclosure shall be made by letter to the appointing Minister and copied to the Permanent Secretary in the Premier's Office as Chair of the Integrity Committee for Ministerial Political Advisors; and to the Premier.

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