Nepal | December 09, 2019

Govt told to scrap notice to hire civic staff

Jagdishor Panday

Kathmandu, June 10

After a week long discussion, the parliamentary State Affairs and Good Governance Committee today directed the government to scrap the public notice published by the Federal Public Service Commission to hire 9,161 civil servants at 115 local levels, stating the process was against the spirit of the constitution.

“The advertisement published by the FPSC does not follow the constitutional provision on proportional inclusion. So, as per Article 293 of the constitution, the FPSC and the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration should scrap the public advertisement,” reads the directive issued by the parliamentary committee.

The constitutional article states that committees of the House of Representatives may monitor and evaluate functioning, including reports, of constitutional bodies, other than the National Human Rights Commission, and give necessary direction or advice.

The parliamentary committee has also directed the ministry to conduct organisation and management survey of local and provincial governments once again to determine the number of staffers required by sub-national governments. It has also paved the way for local governments to hire employees on temporary basis until provincial public service commissions are formed.

The directive issued by the parliamentary panel received backing of the majority of panel members, although some of the MPs from the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP), mainly from the erstwhile CPN-UML, did not support the panel’s decision.

NCP lawmaker Bijay Subba said he did not support the move to scrap the public notice to recruit employees. Two other NCP lawmakers, Nabaraj Silwal and Jhapat Rawal, were also not happy with the panel’s decision. But NCP lawmakers from the erstwhile Maoist Centre criticised the government and the FPSC for not following constitutional provisions.

Lawmakers from the Nepali Congress, Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal and Samajwadi Party-Nepal were against the hiring process initiated by the government and the FPSC from the beginning.

Minister of Federal Affairs and General Administration Lal Babu Pandit, whose office had directed the FPSC to publish the public notice, however, defended the move stating that the ministry had acted as per the “laws endorsed by the Parliament and had never made attempts to violate constitutional norms while recruiting employees”. “The ministry had only played the role of an intermediary between local governments and the FPSC to hire required number of employees because provincial public service commissions were yet to be formed,” said Pandit.

Pandit’s ministry stated that it had already received a copy of the directive issued by the parliamentary committee. “We will soon hold a meeting and decide what to do,” an official of the ministry said, adding, “The final decision to hire employees was taken by the Cabinet. So, we may have to take the matter back to the Cabinet.”

The Cabinet meeting will be held only after the PM returns from Europe, a PMO source told THT.

A version of this article appears in print on June 11, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.

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