PLP added 9,000 jobs to payroll


Deputy Chief Reporter

AN estimated 70 per cent of the contracts awarded to persons for government employment under the Christie administration did not go through the Ministry of the Public Service, Garden Hills MP Brensil Rolle said yesterday.

Mr Rolle, who is the minister responsible for National Insurance and the public service, told Parliament this allowed Cabinet ministers to act “willy-nilly”.

He said at the end of the Progressive Liberal Party’s last term in office, 9,000 people were added to the public service.

Direct hiring to the Departments of Customs and Immigration, Mr Rolle also said, was done without consultation of the public service. In 2016, 114 customs officers were hired along with 217 immigration officers between March and April of 2017 and were told to report for duty without letters of engagement, the MP said.

The majority of them were just vetted when the Minnis administration took office, he said. However, according to Mr Rolle, around 50 of these persons have not been able to pass the vetting process. The government, he said, has been advised by police to not even consider them for engagement.

“Imagine, Mr Speaker working with Inland Revenue when they created that small revenue collection agency,” the MP said during his contribution to the mid-year budget.

“Four hundred persons in Inland Revenue were given contracts for six months. That was the life expectation of the persons employed in Inland Revenue.

“Now because individuals’ contracts expired in their period and the government perhaps did not renew the contracts, they are saying that this government fired and terminated. They had all those rights to make those persons permanent and pensionable to give them a yearly contract. They had the right to do anything.

“They could have done what was done for the person at the Bridge Authority and said if the government wants to part with you they have to give you three years’ notice before. They could have done that but they chose to give them six months and when the contracts expired, because some of them were not renewed, they turn around and said the government is insensitive.”

Mr Rolle was referring to a contract given to a Bridge Authority executive outlining no fixed termination date and specifying there was to be no less than three years’ notice in the event of termination. The Tribune revealed this back in January. The contract was worth $100,000. Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis has said he will not honour the agreement, which he called questionable.

Mr Rolle continued: “My ministry has ascertained that there are nearly 70 per cent of the contracts created within the last five years under the PLP were not processed through the Ministry of Public Service.

“Mr Speaker this allowed ministers to act willy-nilly. They could do anything. They did not have to go to the public service to ensure that persons were properly contracted.”

Regarding hiring in the Customs and Immigration Departments he said: “Mr Speaker, several officers could not pass the vetting. The majority of the officers were vetted since coming to office and many of them went in the programme where they were told they were now a customs officer but the rules of engagement are serious. Having been vetted there are at least 50 persons from this exercise who cannot pass. The police recommended that we should not even consider them.”

He also said there were hundreds of people contracted to work with the Road Traffic Department under the same conditions.

However, Englerston MP Glenys Hanna Martin, who is also the former transport and aviation minister, denied this claim.

She also accused Mr Rolle of misleading the House when it came to hiring outside of the public service.

She said every ministry was a part of the public service and has a permanent secretary to execute certain functions.

On the background check issue, Mrs Hanna Martin said all persons entering the Department of Road Traffic were vetted, but may have been vetted subsequent to entering their programme. She said they would not have qualified if they were not vetted.

However, she admitted there were concerns with one or two individuals, but these issues were dealt with.


Alex_Charles says...


I don't care about what they former administration did anymore. We know they were full of shit. Would be nice if you guys got your heads out of your asses and run the damn country with some integrity and due diligence. Stop rushing.

Posted 13 March 2018, 11:35 a.m. Suggest removal

sheeprunner12 says...

Review the laws or policies to make it MANDATORY that all Government hires must go through one of the established Commissions and please create a Teachers' Service Commission.

Posted 13 March 2018, 12:23 p.m. Suggest removal

BahamasForBahamians says...

This guy is pissed there is no room for Garden Hills constituents in the public service anymore.

Now he has to actually work to retain his seat.

The PLP was voted out because of these things , we know that Brensil.

What are you guys doing to prevent and resolve this? To properly govern our country ?

Posted 13 March 2018, 1:50 p.m. Suggest removal

bogart says...

Sadly the present is tied to the past.. Doc Sands needs ventilatirs to help people whose lives depend on breathing and money is scarce.
Now yet another challenge restricting money to help patients an buy hospotal beds an breathing equipment dat Roc wid Doc gon now hav to pay all dem people dere balance of dere contracts....mekking it worser fer Doc Sands to hav nuff money....
Dis one tuff situation, in all fairness when da car cannot go fas den yinna hav to fix da problem....

Posted 13 March 2018, 1:51 p.m. Suggest removal

birdiestrachan says...

This crew should all be ashamed of themselves. Those people were Bahamians
who needed to work to support themselves and their families. When will Bensil
Rolle move on.

Posted 13 March 2018, 3:05 p.m. Suggest removal

hrysippus says...

Yes, you're right bird, the government should just hire every Bahamian in the country and then there would be no unemployment. I need one like that bridge woman who gets $100,00 per year for the next 3 hundred years. Who do I call get mines?

Posted 13 March 2018, 3:38 p.m. Suggest removal

Porcupine says...

Why do we pride ourselves on having a job, while sitting around playing with our phones?
Did we ever have a work ethic? Absolutely!
Do we have a good work ethic now? Absolutely not!
Quite sad to see the moral fabric of a nation in such disarray.

Posted 14 March 2018, 7:05 a.m. Suggest removal

sheeprunner12 says...

A USA study found that employees who work a normal 8 hour/day job actually produce 2.5 hours of work because of their pre-occupation with social media while on the job ......... This is a chronic problem in The Bahamas.

Posted 14 March 2018, 12:08 p.m. Suggest removal

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