Gota disagrees with Deshapriya over graduate appointees

COOPERATION – President Gotabaya Rajapaksa wants Sri Lankans to come together

ECONOMYNEXT – President Gotabaya Rajapaksa does not agree with the order given by the Elections Commission to refrain from handing over letters of appointment to graduate recruits which have been posted on March 1 and 2.

“We don’t understand why this order has been given,” President Rajapaksa told reporters in Colombo Thursday.

“The appointments have already been made and we have called them in for training,” the President said. He added that “all training in the Public Service would have to stop under these circumstances.”

The appointments of 45,585 unemployed graduates to government positions were speeded up by the new administration and the government claims that the letters were posted before the election was declared.

“We are going to meet the Elections Commission and discuss the matter with the members,” the President said.

The Chairman of the Commission Mahinda Deshapriya ordered that the letters be handed over one week after the Parliamentary General elections are concluded.

Deshapriya noted that these recruits would be taking up their posts during the election period.

“In the past, any appointments being made to the government, Local government bodies or other state institutions after due process of competitive examinations, interviews etc has been followed have been suspended during election periods,” Deshapriya said in his order sent to the Public Services Commission.

He added that it was recruitment for emergency reasons was permitted.

These recruits are being given appointments “not due to an emergency or to fill vacancies,” the Chief Commissioner said.

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At a separate Press conference, Cabinet Spokesman Bandula Gunewardene said the appointments were made after a “100-day process.” He said it was fulfilling a promise made by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa during his election campaign last year.

The minister further said that since the appointments have already been made, a payment of Rs 20,000 promised to the recruits during their training period has to be made, despite training being halted as a result of Deshapriya’s directive. (Colombo, March 5, 2020)

-Arjuna Ranawana

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