Minister questions evaluation, back-pedals

A rift opened up within the government on Friday when Interior Minister Argyris Dinopoulos (photo) appeared to openly question the coalition’s strategy regarding the evaluation of civil servants.

While appearing on a morning TV show, Dinopoulos indicated that he backed the decision of Attica Governor Rena Dourou, along with about two dozen mayors, not to cooperate with the government in its efforts to assess civil servants’ performances.

“I’m with Dourou on this,” said Dinopoulos. His comment prompted consternation in Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’s office as the issue has become a political battleground between the government and SYRIZA.

Dinopoulos later spoke to several radio stations in a bid to play down his comments. He said he was being sarcastic when he said he agreed with the SYRIZA governor.

The minister also adopted a different stance when speaking to Kathimerini. He admitted that the government has to check the contracts of thousands of civil servants who were given permanent positions in 2006 despite being on fixed-term contracts earlier as the proper procedures had not been followed.

New Democracy officials started gathering on Friday in Halkidiki ahead of the first of two events Saturday to mark the 40 years since the conservative party was formed.

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