Jobs freeze hurting prisons


THE blanket freeze on recruitment in the public service by the Government is having a negative impact on the operations of Correctional Services (CS).
The interim president of the Correctional Services Union, Daniel Mollen, said the government seriously needed to revisit its decision and start recruiting CS officers.
“PNGCS is currently being forgotten and is in a state of disaster because the blanket freeze by the government on new recruits is having negative effect on its operation,” Mollen said.
“I am aware that police and the Defence Force have not frozen their recruitment processes.
“New recruits are being trained to cover any security concerns or mishaps that have the potential of derailing the (Apec) meeting and may cause embarrassment to our country, but for PNG Correctional Services, the last recruitment was in 2015.”
Mollen said the shortage was caused by the ban on recruitment three years ago which has exerted extreme pressure on aging officers in prison facilities. “There is no new recruitment to replace those who have aged and retired, or resigned or dismissed from CS,” he said.
“There is a gap of three years now, it’s going to be very bad in the fourth and fifth years and that’s why the union is raising this concern and ringing the bell that something needs to be done immediately to start the recruitment process.” Mollen said more than 2000 applications were put on hold due to the freeze because there was no funding for training programmes and upgrading of facilities.
“The freeze on recruitments in the entire public service as announced by Public Service Minister Elias Kapavore is an ill-conceived and a reckless decision that needs to be revisited immediately.”