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Thursday, June 20, 2024

CIVIL SERVICE AGENCY REBUKES MINISTER COOPER KRUAH OVER STAFFING VIOLATIONS

Date:

MONROVIA, LIBERIA – The Civil Service Agency (CSA) has strongly criticized Minister Cooper Kruah of the Ministry of Labor for attempting to fill approximately 93 positions that are already occupied, raising concerns about the integrity and non-partisan nature of the civil service.

Director-General Josiah F. Jokai highlighted that the CSA, as an independent and non-partisan institution, maintains a strict policy against politically motivated actions. This policy is essential for ensuring that employment decisions are based solely on merit and the needs of the civil service.

“Hon. Minister, the Civil Service Agency does not engage in business with political parties. Therefore, your request to consider the four individuals cannot be considered for employment purposes,” Jokai stated. He further noted that Minister Kruah’s request violated the CSA’s employment freeze, effective since February 16, 2024, which was implemented to maintain stability within the civil service and prevent political influence during the employment process.

The CSA’s decisive action reaffirms its commitment to a fair and transparent civil service. By rejecting Minister Kruah’s request, the agency underscores its dedication to non-partisanship and merit-based employment. This incident serves as a reminder of the importance of adhering to established policies to ensure the effective and impartial functioning of government institutions.

In a communication dated March 5, 2024, Minister Kruah requested employment consideration for four individuals, describing them as “outstanding individuals” at the Civil Service Agency. However, the CSA informed him that it does not do business with political parties and cannot consider his request.

The CSA further instructed Minister Kruah to reverse the illegal human resource transactions and adhere to the laws and policies governing the Civil Service. An April 5, 2024, communication from the CSA informed Minister Kruah that his decision to transfer and reassign employees violated Chapters 3 and 4 of the Civil Service Standing Orders of 2012, which state that all human resource movements must receive approval from the Director-General before implementation.

Minister Kruah’s actions also contravened the CSA’s employment freeze, yet he has recalled all Labor Commissioners across the country and hired new individuals to act as Acting Labor Commissioners. Kruah, a well-known Liberian lawyer and official of the Movement for Democracy and Reconstruction (MDR), has been linked to politically motivated staffing decisions within the Ministry of Labor, predominantly favoring individuals from Nimba County.

Sources reveal that President Joseph Boakai appointed seven ministers from Nimba County, including Senator Prince Y. Johnson’s daughter, who serves as Assistant Minister for Regional Labour Affairs. Other appointees include Mr. Emmanuel Zorh, Jr., Mr. Rufus T. Saylee, Mr. Rufus Kolako Freeman, Raphael E. Donokolo, Deputy Minister for Administration Othello P. Mansuo, and Minister Kruah himself.

The source criticized the concentration of individuals from the same region within a single ministry, calling it unprofessional and unhealthy. Moreover, Minister Kruah has instructed the human resource department to hire 94 individuals, all of whom are his kinsmen.

The CSA expressed serious concern over the creation of a new post, Deputy Inspector General for Administration, within the Ministry of Labor, without proper approval. Minister Kruah appointed his kinsman, Darius K. Weemie, to this non-existent post, in violation of the Civil Service Standing Orders and the Human Resource Management Policy Manual.

The CSA emphasized that no approval was granted for this new position and expressed alarm that Mr. Weemie is impersonating as Deputy Inspector General for Administration, citing business entities for conferences and carrying out illegal transactions on behalf of the Government of Liberia.

The CSA’s response highlights its commitment to maintaining the integrity of the civil service and ensuring that all human resource transactions comply with established laws and policies.

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