The Chief Secretary, the Civil Service and the wider Public Sector enjoys the full support of Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar. In a statement issued in reply to media coverage and statements issued in recent days relating to the announcement of the new leadership and management programmes on Monday, HMGOG has today reiterated its support for the Civil Service.
Chief Minister, the Hon Fabian Picardo QC, said: “The Civil Service knows and understands the commitment of my Government in relation to it. Our commitment is set out in our manifestos of 2011, 2015 and, of course, in 2019. Everything we have done in Government that has had, or had the potential of having, an impact on the Civil Service and the wider Public Sector, has been done in consultation with the Unions. That has always been the way of my Government, and so will it continue to be.”
HM GOG notes the statement made by the Leader of the Opposition, Keith Azopardi and points him to the relevant parts of the GSLP Liberal Alliance’s manifesto relevant to this matter. The manifesto provides, at page 15 that ‘The GSLP Liberals believe in the conduct of the public affairs of Gibraltar through an independent, efficient, well-trained and effective Civil Service and the Public Sector as a whole. These include the members of the Gibraltar Development Corporation (or GDC), the Agencies, Authorities and companies. We will consult closely with Civil Servants, other Public Servants and their Unions on all matters that are relevant to them.
We will maintain the commitment we have to preserve the size of the civil service and to ensure that it is properly resourced so that it delivers the results that are required in order to fulfil our manifesto commitments. We will finalise the AA recruitment process and work to ensure proper succession in all senior posts. We repeat all of our commitments to the Civil Service and the Public Sector from our earlier manifestos.’
The Chief Minister further explained that “on page 18, the GSLP Liberal Alliance’s manifesto sets out that ‘The Government proposes to embark on a major reform project, in partnership with all the relevant unions, modernising these services and setting the scene for a flexible and diverse economy.’ In addition, we have committed to ensuring the proper succession planning for senior posts in the Civil Service. In consonance with both the conduct of my Government over the last eight years and the commitments/announcements made in the manifesto on which we secured a third term of office just last week, the Chief Secretary made a further announcement earlier this week.”
The Chief Minister concluded by saying: “I don’t know if the Leader of the Opposition cared to consider a manifesto other than his own in the run up to the election, but our commitment to the Civil Service is clear and unequivocal. One of his first statements since the election, it suggests he has not even read our programme for Government chosen by more than double the number of people who voted for him. Indeed, the Chief Secretary himself, in his first statement this week, made clear that this project will be conducted in consultation with the Unions, leaving no room, in my view, for the suggestion that anything is being railroaded days after an election. The suggestion by Mr Azopardi that HM GOG is not, or will not be, consulting with the Unions is entirely to be dismissed as nothing more than political posturing which will be seen for the cynical ploy that it is.”