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Patrick Yarde sworn-in as acting PSC Chairman

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Although the case filed by Carvil Duncan against the attempt to remove him as Chairman of the Public Service Commission (PSC) is still engaging the attention of the Court, Trade Unionist, Patrick Yarde was today (Thursday, May 04, 2017), sworn in as acting Chairman of the PSC.

Yarde who, according to reports, recently emerged winner of the recent Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU) elections, was sworn in by President David Granger. Automatically, he is now an ex-officio member of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), the Police Service Commission and the Guyana Defence Force Commission’s Board.

The swearing-in ceremony, which accorded with Article 200 (5) of the Constitution of Guyana, was held at State House in the presence of Minister of State, Mr. Joseph Harmon and members of the PSC.

President Granger explained that since the removal of Duncan of this important Constitutional body its work has been lagging behind. “It ought not to be delayed further because the function of the Public Service Commission and the Judicial Service Commission has been affected… This is entirely in accordance with the requirement of an efficient Government that the work of those four boards should not be delayed or paralysed any further,” he said.

He added that his Administration is confident that this new appointment is a step in the right direction, which will result in the efficient functioning of the four commissions. Further, with the appointment of the Acting Chancellor of the Judiciary and the Acting Chief Justice, the work of the JSC in particular, is expected to move apace.

In an invited comment, Mr. Yarde said that he is pleased to have been asked to serve in this new position and assured that he will perform the duties of his office in accordance with the Constitution. “It is my view…that the public service of Guyana be a very efficient, effective and professional career service, faithfully serving the Government of the day and the people of Guyana,” he said.

In October last year, the President ordered the suspension of Mr. Carvil Duncan pending the outcome of the proceedings of the Tribunal, which was set up to inquire, investigate and recommend whether he (Mr. Duncan) ought to be removed from office for inability to discharge the functions of his Constitutional posts.

Duncan later filed legal action, challenging the decision in Court. That case, however, seems to be at a standstill following an altercation between the Minister of Legal Affairs and the presiding Judge on March 23, 2017, during the cross-examination of Carvil Duncan’s Confidential Secretary, Diana Persaud. The incident which was deemed disrespectful, saw the Judge abandoning his bench without adjourning the matter, and has since asked for an apology from the Minister in open court. Until that apology is forthcoming, the continuation of the case is unclear.

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