General Secretary of the Dominica Public Service Union (DPSU), Thomas Letang believes that Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit has used the recently held meeting with junior clerks to make political mileage.
Skerrit called the meeting on Thursday and announced that his government will appoint 53 junior clerks into the public service.
However, Letang said during an interview with Dominica News Online (DNO) on Friday, that calling public officers to tell them that they are going to be appointed doesn’t make any sense.
“I believe the Prime Minister is just using that meeting with the junior clerks to make political mileage,” he said.
The DPSU general Secretary accused the prime minister of doing nothing about a situation which Letang said Skerrit was aware of.
“You know that there are 53 vacant positions. For years, we have been calling on you to appoint the people, making a case for them, explaining what they are losing, getting the same basic salary for ten (10) years …They don’t get study leave and the gratuity will only start after they are appointed…” he explained. “We are having a meeting; now, you are calling them.”
He suggested that the Prime Minister’s meeting with the junior clerks was unnecessary and was intended to prevent people from attending the DPSU rally on Thursday afternoon.
He stressed that over the years the union has been calling on the government to appoint these workers, cognizant of the negative implications of their non-appointment in terms of their inability get study leave, annual increment or to take a bank loan.
“But nobody has been taking us seriously,” the union official noted. “You knew the vacant positions were there. All you had to do, was make the recommendations to the Public Service Commission for their appointment.”
Letang promised that the union will monitor the situation and is going to make a case for the junior clerks once they are appointed, “that we get a commitment that their years of service as non-appointed employees will be considered.”