Department heads in various government agencies are being accused of often shirking the responsibilities of the post in which they are appointed.
Junior Minister for Tourism Archibald Christian levelled those accusations in the House of Assembly last week.
“Why does an elected member have to be behind heads of departments to get things done? And then people want to know why sometimes the ministers have to micromanage. That is why; because the people that are paid to ensure things get done, don’t always do what they suppose to do,” Christian said.
During the claims, Christian singled out former Director of the Public Works Department, Jeffery Skelton.
The junior minister said Skelton had been leading a department that constantly does road and sewerage works but often neglects to put roads back in the conditions in which they were found.
He said the department often leaves equipment or piles of rubble by the road for weeks; even months after completing a task.
He gave an example in which the Skelton-led department abandoned a piece of heavy equipment (a road paver) by Queen Elizabeth II Park for nearly a year; despite several instructions to remove it.
Christian said he personally issued those instructions for months. He said Skelton only had the equipment removed after appearing before the 2018 Standing Finance Committee, which comprises legislators of the House of Assembly.
Christian said: “In Standing Finance, I mentioned it to the Director of Public Works again and finally, after almost a year-plus, the paver was moved.”
Skelton’s contract as Director of Public Works only expired recently. Skelton was the one who opted not to renew his contract, according to Permanent Secretary in the Works Ministry Anthony McMaster.
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