Government requests for records of appointments in Foreign Service

It has been brought to the attention of the Government Transition sub-committee on Foreign Affairs that the recent appointment of certain persons into the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as foreign service officers was not done fairly and equitably, in accordance with the laid down rules and regulations governing the appointments of officers into the Civil Service and into the foreign service, in particular.

In a press statement signed by Mr. J. V. Gbeho, the Chairman of the government transition sub-committee on foreign affairs, the committee, therefore, requested for the relevant records relating to these appointments for examination, in order to ascertain the veracity or otherwise of these concerns.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs duly submitted all the required information for study by the committee.

It noted that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, based on its personnel requirements, had applied to government to recruit 30 branch A5 foreign service officers, for whom financial cover and approval to recruit had been received from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning and the officer of the Head of the Civil Service.

The committee found that: the number of persons recommended for appointment had been unilaterally raised to 40 by the ex-Minister, contrary to the 30 originally approved.  That only about 20 per cent of the persons appointed by the ex-Minister fell within the first 30 places of the list of over 150 applicants who had been interviewed for the appointments and about another 20 per cent did not appear at all in the interview list.

It must be emphasized that, according to the rules and regulations governing the appointment, those who placed within the first 30, in order of merit, were to be appointed or recruited, as indeed was recommended by the interview panel established by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

It thus became obvious to the committee that the appointment of some of the officers concerned had not been done fairly and in accordance with the rules and regulations and that there had been clear cases of discrimination, whereby some of those who placed within the first 30 had been passed over for others who placed below 30 or who did even apply to be examined and interviewed

It was on the basis of these findings that the Committee directed that all such appointments be suspended, for a review of the situation to ensure that the appointments are done according to the rules and regulations and as recommended by the Interview Panel.

The Sub-Committee is, therefore taking steps to ensure that the anomaly is corrected and the appointments made in accordance with the rules and regulations.

Source: GNA

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