British Virgin Islands

Monday, Sep 20, 2021

VIP met a depleted public service with low morale - Premier

VIP met a depleted public service with low morale - Premier

Premier Andrew Fahie said when his governing Virgin Islands Party (VIP) administration first entered office in 2019, it met the public service in a depleted state with low morale.
Fahie argued on his party’s Let’s Talk radio programme recently that this is something persons need to recognise and insisted that the system needed closer examination.

According to the Premier, his government is working towards a transformation together with the Governor and Deputy Governor, since the public service portfolio falls directly under their remit.

The territory’s leader expressed frustration at the constraints faced by ministers with the public service and said it sometimes takes several months to even hire a messenger in government.

Referring to his government’s intention to hire new ministerial political advisers, the Premier reiterated that his administration has asked for no new monies and noted that their hiring was being done in a targeted manner from monies already allocated.

These monies, the Premier stated, would have most likely been spent on some other consultancy instead.

He further explained that the hires were done in this manner to avoid the bureaucracy that normally exists in the government’s public service structure.

Refuting claims that his administration is involved in hiring friends and family, the Premier said persons may be surprised to see who is hired after evaluations of all applications take place.

“This country is in dire need to build a strong public service, which I know that we’re going to do with the Deputy Governor and the Governor that we are working on now,” the Premier said.

The Premier contended that, without a fix of the system, future administrations will also face the same constraints he faced.

Premier Fahie said this was one of the reasons his government moved to implement steps to create an e-government platform for citizens to better do business with the government.

He cited these steps as clear examples of accountability and transparency.

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