Isaac Bampo Addo, Executive Secretary of the Civil and Local Government Staff Association, Ghana (CLOGSAG), said on Friday that political interference hampered the effective delivery of services by civil and local governments.

In his view, political interference takes the form of interference in the decision-making processes of the civil service and in the administrative procedures of local authorities, including promotions, appointments, transfers, conversions and professional development.

M. Bampo Addo, speaking on the CLOGSAG end-of-year Thanksgiving day in Accra, said the impact of political smearing had created problems in the bureaucracy and administration of civilian and local governments.

He explained that this gives rise to abuse of authority, misconduct, poor service and discrimination in the level of salaries and other working conditions.

These violations inevitably have consequences for the professionalism of the local authorities and the civil service, he added.

Mr Bampo Addo deplored the conditions under which personal assistants or technical assistants to ministers hold posts in the civil service, which will ultimately affect the preservation of institutional memory.

He stated that in some cases non-core ministry officials have been appointed to represent ministries, departments and agencies on boards of directors, authorities and committees.

He said that CLOGSAG is aware of these civil and community restrictions and that we will no longer be on the sidelines.

We look forward to specific guidance to protect these services from inappropriate interference.

Mr Bampo Addo said that attempts to highlight the negative consequences of not respecting the principles of political intervention in the CLOGSAG neutrality project had so far not produced the expected results.

He noted that officers were sanctioned for violating the principles of neutrality while the political authorities exercised restraint and that as a result officers were encouraged or permitted to violate these principles at their discretion.

We believe that this is not what the Supreme Court’s ruling on political interference was meant to be and that we must address this problem and resolve it without delay, he said.

Mr Bampo Addo quoted the late Nathan Quao, who embodied the neutrality of the public service, and said that it is the excellence of the civil servant that will advance the nation, not the politicians.

Areas that need attention, he said, include recruiting the right staff, emphasizing training and retraining, and creating an environment conducive to productivity.

Mr Godwin Brock, Executive Director of the Office of the Head of Public Service, praised the staff for the dedication with which they carried out their duties, in particular during the COWID-19 outbreak.

He congratulated them on innovating the board at their different workplaces.

He stated that the Director of the Community Service would review his partnership with CLOGSAG in the future in order to ensure good conditions for the provision of services to members.

Mr Peter Essaim Asante, director of human resources in the office of the head of local government, praised the staff of the various metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies for their efforts to contain the COWID-19 pandemic with fewer resources.

He thanked the National Directorate of CLOGSAG for the supporting role it has played in the training of some of its employees and called for more support in the near future.

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