NEWS

Beddoes’ Future In The Balance

Mick Beddoes’ future in the Opposition Office hangs in the balance. At the moment, he is working voluntarily as the principal administrative officer with other volunteers. Unless a special dispensation
27 Oct 2014 11:07
Beddoes’ Future In The Balance
Mick Beddoes.

Mick Beddoes’ future in the Opposition Office hangs in the balance.

At the moment, he is working voluntarily as the principal administrative officer with other volunteers.

Unless a special dispensation is granted to them to waive certain requirements like age, they could be subjected to the same rules applied to other civil servants when they apply for permanent positions. This would rule out Mr Beddoes because of his age. The Government has set 55 as the retirement age. Mr Beddoes is 63. The same rules would apply to employees in the Government members room.

The Constitution only says that the “qualification requirements for appointment and the process to be followed for appointment, must be an open, transparent and competitive selection process based on merit.”

The seven positions have not been advertised yet.

Mr Beddoes and his team of volunteers will have to formally apply for the positions to a panel comprising the Leader of the Opposition, Ro Teimumu Kepa, and others. After finalising its selection, the panel will send the list of appointments to the secretary-general to Parliament, Viniana Namosimalua, for ratification and confirmation. This is because The Opposition Office comes under Parliament. Mrs Namosimalua then forwards the list to the Speaker, Dr Jiko Luveni, for her approval and signature. The appointments then become official.

The Constitution does not mention these steps in detail. What it does say under Section 79 (8) is that Mrs Namosimalua has the authority to determine all matters pertaining to the employment of all staff in Parliament including:

– the terms and conditions of employment;

– the qualification requirements for appointment and the process to be followed for appointment, which must be an open, transparent and competitive selection process based on merit

– the salaries, benefits and allowances payable, in accordance with its budget as approved by Parliament;

– the total establishment or total number of staff that are required to be appointed, in accordance with the budget approved by Parliament.

The salaries, benefits and allowances payable to Mrs Namosimalua and any person employed in Parliament are a charge on the Consolidated Fund.

Parliament shall ensure that adequate funding and resources are made available to Mrs Namosimalua  to enable her to independently and effectively exercise the powers and perform her functions and duties.

Mr Beddoes has confirmed that he was asked by Ro Teimumu, the SODELPA leader, to take charge of the Opposition Office in Parliament soon after the final election results were announced on September 23. His appointment had created a stir in the party’s rank and file and parliamentary caucus because they were caught by surprise as there was no consultation. Mr Beddoes claimed that he sought and received the endorsement as the Opposition Leader’s nominee to head the Opposition Office, from the SODELPA ‘s National Executive and parliamentary caucus. Ro Teimumu apparently chose Mr Beddoes because of his experience as Leader of the Opposition for two terms.

After the 2001 election, he served as Opposition Leader from 2002 to 2004.

He was reappointed to the position after the 2006 election.

nemani.delaibatiki@fijisun.com.fj

 



Laybuy it 5squares


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Covid 19 - SPC
Total
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper