Gov’t and GPSU are not rivals – President Granger tells union members

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President David Granger on Sunday issued a call for greater cooperation between the Government and the Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU.

Speaking at the GPSU’s 95th Anniversary Brunch in the Baridi Benab at State House, the Head of State said that the old model of confrontation and acrimony must be abandoned in favour of a new cooperative model in the interest of the effective delivery of public services.

President Granger reminded that the Government and the Unions are partners with a common objective; not competitors or rivals.

“We need to establish among ourselves some form of social compact, particularly between the State and the servants of the State. We have to work together. What happens out there is not only the concern of Central Government; it is the concern of all of us… We are partners in administering and running Guyana,” he said.

Making reference to the first major study on the civil service, the 1953 Mills Report, President Granger said that it is his vision and mission to have a highly-skilled and professional public service, which is capable of providing to Ministers of any Government, the best of its organised thought and collective experience.

“Never again should any Government come into office and be faced with a situation in which senior public servants are taken before the courts or are removed from office.”

Recognising the importance of training for public servants, the President, soon after entering Office, established the Bertram Collins College of the Public Service, specifically targeting new entrants into the field, providing them with the necessary skills to be effective at their job.

The President maintained that in order to serve the people, public servants have to be educated and constantly improve their performance. 

In addition to the at improving efficiency, the Government established the Public Service Appellate Tribunal, convened the Lutchman Commission into the Public Service and markedly increased public servants’ pensions and salaries. President Granger also reminded public servants that they must project themselves beyond Central Government and the coast, noting that have to populate the central, regional and municipal systems of Government and, therefore, they must be able to understand and communicate effectively with the people whom they serve.

“The public service has to be the custodian of standards and those standards have to characterise the delivery of services to all of the regions… You must be able to understand and communicate in the language of the people in the hinterland… You represent a vital constituency and we cannot deliver public services without you,” he said.

Prior to the Brunch at State House, there was a church service at the St. Andrews Kirk Presbyterian Church, located on Brickdam and Avenue of the Republic, led by Reverend Maureen Messiah. President Granger and Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes attended the service. (Extracted and modified from Ministry of the Presidency)

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