Extra posts created to cope with wholesale promotionsMustafizur Rahman
The government has created extra posts of additional and joint secretaries in ‘an interim arrangement’ to cope with the recent promotions in the civil bureaucracy which were over and above the approved organogram.
‘We have created 213 supernumerary posts — 72 of them additional secretaries and 141 joint secretaries — to resolve complications in placing the newly-promoted officials,’ the public administration secretary, Abdus Sobhan Sikder, said.
He said that a large number of officials had been promoted but there had been no vacancies within the present structure.
‘This is a temporary arrangement to cope with the situation after the large-scale promotions in the bureaucracy. Now there will be no complications for these civil servants in carrying out their responsibilities at the respective ministries or divisions,’ Abdus Sobhan told New Age, speaking at his office at the secretariat.
The situation within the civil service is, however, likely to get complicated as no officers will retire in the next two years as at towards the end of 2011, the retirement age for civil servants was extended from 57 years of age to 59 and more officials are now expecting promotions.
On February 8, 2012, a total of 649 officers, most of them from the administration cadre, were promoted to the ranks of additional secretary, joint secretary and deputy secretary but most of them were asked to remain in their former position as the bureaucracy did not have enough sanctioned posts to place them.
Many officials claimed that they were facing problems in discharging their responsibilities in their old posts even after the promotion.
Asked why so many cadre officials were given promotions at one time although there were no vacancies, the senior secretary said that such a move was intended to inspire those officials who had been working in the same rank for years without promotion.
‘This is an attempt to infuse dynamism in the activities of civil servants. It was decided earlier that most the officials will be kept in
situ even after their promotions,’ Abdus Sobhan added.
The public administration ministry approved the additional posts and restructured the administrative set-up following the promotions, according to an official order issued on February 23.
The additional posts have been created at all ministries and divisions including with the president’s and the prime minister’s office while the deputy commissioners of different districts who were promoted to joint secretary were asked to remain in the same place until further order to maintain order in administration, according to officials.
Some officials have alleged that the Awami League-led government had given promotions only to those officers who were seen as supportive to the party, keeping its eyes set on parliamentary elections to be held at the latest in early 2014 and that as a result in the process many more competent officials were left out.
A total of 127 joint secretaries got promoted to additional secretary rank, 264 deputy secretaries to joint secretary while 258 senior assistant secretaries were picked for promotion to the deputy secretary rank.
This resulted in more than 1,500 deputy secretaries against 830 approved posts as set out in the government’s organogram. In addition, there were around 500 joint secretaries against 250 formally approved posts and about 148 additional secretaries against 108 posts, an official said.
There are around 12 lakh officials and employees in the government service and until this year, more than 40,000 of them, including about 2000 officers, went into retirement every year, creating opportunities for promotions and fresh appointments for others.
In the next two years, no public servants will, however, retire from service because of the extension to the retirement age which came into effect from December 26, 2011.
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