By KHRISNA RUSSELL
Tribune Chief Reporter
FOREIGN Affairs and Public Service Minister Fred Mitchell yesterday said all political appointees were recently asked to submit resignations as a matter of routine with the Davis administration’s election to government.
Mr Mitchell was contacted to respond to a voice note circulating claiming that up to 15 people at the Office of the Prime Minister were told to go home this week.
It was further alleged that their contracts were not being honoured, but that they were given one month’s salary instead.
Mr Mitchell said while he was not familiar with what took place at the Office of the Prime Minister, he suspected that whatever happened was routine.
“I don’t know the specifics of what happened at the Office of the Prime Minster, but I explain to people that there are two levels of hirings in this country as in other countries. One is at the political level and the other is the public service level and if you are at the political level, once the administration changes all the politically hired people have to change.
“That’s the way the system is, and I suspect that that’s what is at work as you report at the OPM.”
He continued: “They (the former administration) did the same thing, so I am not sure. I am not using that as a defence, but that’s just the system and, for example, the most obvious example would be the Foreign Ministry.
“All political level appointments like consulate and special contracts have been asked to submit their resignations to the permanent secretary. That is a matter of routine, and the prime minister decides whether or not to accept the resignation or to allow them to continue.
“That’s the way it works so we have them all in the Foreign Ministry at the moment with the exception of one, the other one is outstanding as well.”