Minister calls on Tsipras to clarify position on public sector checks

Administrative Reform Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called on SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras to publicly state his position on the government’s efforts to review public sector contracts and root out civil servants who were hired illegally.

SYRIZA argues that the government is simply using the process to meet the sacking targets it has agreed with the troika and risks leaving municipalities with staff shortages.

“We are not looking to fill any quota for dismissals, we are trying to establish proper regulations,” said Mitsotakis Alpha 98.9 FM. “Any employees that do not cooperate will face disciplinary consequences.”

An Athens court of first instance on Thursday deemed illegal and abusive a decision by the ADEDY civil servants’ union to prevent its members from taking part in an evaluation process, prompting Mitsotakis to underline its determination to complete the assessment.

Thursday’s verdict was the fourth to uphold the government’s efforts to carry out the evaluation and bars ADEDY from holding further action on this issue. The government aims for the evaluation process to lead to 15 percent of civil servants being retrained or moved and for assessors to root out those who have used forged degrees and other qualifications to get their jobs.

“We have to agree on the self-evident: It is clear that everyone has to be evaluated,” said Mitsotakis. “It is also evident that anyone who got a job in the public sector illegally has to be dismissed. The checks for forged certificates and on contracts that were made permanent without the necessary criteria being fulfilled will be stepped up.”

The minister, however, has encountered resistance from 19 mayors, many of whom are affiliated to SYRIZA. They have so far refused to provide the details of thousands of local authority employees who in 2006 had their fixed-term contracts made permanent by the then New Democracy government.

It is expected that Attica Governor Rena Dourou will also refuse to cooperate. The mayors fear that the checks will lead to sackings and municipalities being left shortstaffed.

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