The two persons appointed to two key public roles required by the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) Constitution will be sworn in by Governor Ric Todd on Friday.
Dr Beatrice Fulford will be the new chairman of the TCI Public Service Commission (PSC) and Cynthia Astwood the TCI Complaints Commissioner, both with effect from Monday, 2 September 2013.
Their appointments are for a period of three years and were made in accordance with the relevant parts of the TCI Constitution: section 89 relating to the PSC; section 99 relating to the Complaints Commissioner.
The role of the Public Service Commission (PSC) is to: uphold the principles of merit, neutrality and integrity in the public service; help to build an effective public service with high standards and effectiveness; and monitor and provide advice on standards of conduct and ethics in the public service. The PSC has been substantially reformed since the enactment of the Public Service Ordinance (2012). The new legislation places greater emphasis on the PSCs ‘oversight’ responsibility for the recruitment, promotion and discipline of civil servants, rather than PSC’s previous micro-managing role.
The Complaints Commissioner is an office set out in the Constitution as one of the institutions protecting good governance. The commissioner is independent and has the significant role of investigating complaints of maladministration in the government of the TCI.
“These are two very important public offices which play important constitutional roles here in the TCI,” said Todd. “I am grateful to Dr Fulford and Mrs Astwood for their public service to date and I am confident that they will serve TCI and its people very well in their new roles too.
“Both are exceptionally qualified for these positions. No-one can doubt their proven integrity and commitment to the public service over many years. They are both respected figures, who bring a wealth of experience to these challenging roles; in Dr Fulford’s case including serving as a previous permanent secretary in the Ministry of Education and Mrs Astwood is a former chief secretary and chairman of the PSC.
“I am sure everyone will join me in extending thanks, congratulations and best wishes to Dr Fulford and Mrs Astwood.”
The Governor made these appointments having carried out not only the consultation set out in the Constitution but also taking account of more informal consultations and after carefully considering other appropriate candidates.
The four other board members of the PSC are also appointed by the Governor, after being proposed by the premier, leader of the opposition, the Civil Servants Association and one joint nomination by all three. The present members of the PSC filling the first three positions are respectively Jamell Robinson, Pastor Bradley Handfield and Wendy Saunders. The fourth position, which was held until 15 August by Alpheus Gardiner, is currently vacant.