Politics

Burgess appeals to Governor over woman’s dismissal

  • Press Conference with Shadow Minister of Public Works, Mr. Derrick Burgess JP, MP.(Photo by Akil Simmons)

The Deputy Speaker of the House has appealed to the Governor to help a government employee who he said was sacked after her friend was charged with a drugs offence.

Derrick Burgess told MPs during Friday’s Motion to Adjourn that the employee was not reinstated even after her friend was acquitted.

He said: “I just hope that my friend again on Langton Hill, upon presentation to him, will make this right because this is wrong.

“The Code of Conduct is written and everybody goes by it and this person should be treated fairly as others have been.”

Mr Burgess said the employee “was not even charged, was not called as a witness, had no connection to the case”.

“And the person is still out after following all the protocols to try to get this person back.”

Mr Burgess said the employee, whom he did not identify, was terminated for “gross misconduct because that is the only way you can be dismissed under the Code of Conduct”.

But he added that the Code of Conduct for government employees stated that “an officer acquitted of a criminal charge in any court shall not be dismissed”.

“I know of four other cases of government employees who were charged in the court on indictable charges and were found not guilty, had been reinstated.

“This person was not even charged, not even called as a witness and still out there — I can only put it down to some vendetta that the civil servant in charge has laid on this young person.

“The civil servant refuses to abide by this code of conduct.”

Mr Burgess said the employee’s representatives had followed all the correct protocols but were not invited to a hearing with the Public Service Commission.

He added: “That’s unusual. Even in the courts you have a better deal there. And as it stands now, we understand that the PSC has upheld the recommendation of the civil servant.”

Mr Burgess said he brought the matter to the House of Assembly because the employee had exhausted all options.

He said: “We were all elected here to take care of the needs of our people. Some things probably shouldn’t come here but when folks have followed all the protocols and nothing happens, then they come to us to air it out in Parliament. I hope something will happen for this person.”

Mr Burgess added: “I am hoping that my good friend on Langton Hill is listening because that’s probably the only one that can make this right.”