By PETER ESILA
AGRICULTURE and Livestock Minister John Simon says the Department of Agriculture and Livestock (DAL) secretary position is still not vacant, as the secretary Daniel Kombuk still remains suspended.
He said there would still be an acting secretary and wanted the Public Service Commission to make an announcement on the vacancy.
Simon said in Port Moresby yesterday when announcing the new acting secretary Dr Nelson Simbiken, who is also the PNG Spice Industry Board chief executive officer.
“The reason why we continue to appoint acting secretaries is because the secretary position is still not vacant, the secretary is still suspended and Public Service Commission is handling that and there are a few legal issues going on,” Simon said.
“Until the matter is dealt with, then as soon as the position becomes vacant, then we will advertise, right now you can’t advertise.”
He said one of the Government’s main focus areas was agriculture but the DAL still had a lot of legacy issues that needed to be fixed.
“I have written letters to the Public Service Commission to speed up the process, so we know what is going to happen to the secretary’s position, what is the latest.
“As soon as that is done, then we will decide on what we will do going forward in terms of the secretary. You cannot advertise now because the position is not vacant.
“Until the matter is dealt with and decided, if he (Kombuk) will be terminated, that position becomes vacant, then everyone will apply.
“You cannot continue to suspend him (Kombuk) forever, some decisions need to be done and I call on the Public Service Commission to speed up the process so we know what is going to happen. If he has to come back then we bring him back, if not what happens so we advertise and everybody has to apply.”
By PETER ESILA