Insider Economy Public service reform proposals back to parliament

Public service reform proposals back to parliament

The House Finance Committee on Monday will open again the hot issue of public service reform in Cyprus.

After four years of suspension of proposed legislation following rejection of the initial bills, a new reform package will come under the radar of the Committee, Phileleftheros reports.

The government is now more optimistic that the bills will get the House’s positive vote this time around, since they include positions and recommendations that had been proposed in the past by political parties.

Finance Minister Constantinos Petrides, who was at the helm of the initial reform bid, will try to convince parliamentary parties that the bills will greatly improve the way the public service operates.

He will also present them with a new way of evaluating civil servants, as 99.9% of them are now rated as excellent. And with their promotions primarily based on seniority and ‘contacts’ they may have.

However, despite the government’s ongoing social dialogue the union of public servants (Pasydy) considers that there are still open issues that need to be negotiated further.

An insider said that all issues will be on the table for debate and it will become clear whether the government intends to confront Pasydy or not.

Specifically, the bills introduce a new framework for the evaluation and selection of candidates by the Public Service Commission.

This paves the way for  the appointment of the most suitable employee to a specific position, and for the principle of objectivity and meritocracy to be applied.

In addition, experience, additional qualifications, performance appraisal and the recommendation of the head of a department will be taken into account before one gets a promotion.

To become a permanent employee or be promoted, civil servants will be evaluated on a semi-annual and annual basis. At the same time, the performance of civil servants will be evaluated from 1 to 10.

In the case where the performance of a civil servant for three consecutive years is rated below five, then he/she will not be a candidate for promotion.

Arrangements have also been introduced in regard to the appointment of investigating officers to look into disciplinary offences against civil servants.


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