Top tiers of admin get heavier
Only six months after promoting more than 200 officials, the government has gone for another large-scale promotion in the already top-heavy civil administration, making its upper tiers further imbalanced.
Yesterday, 536 officials were promoted to the ranks of additional, joint and deputy secretaries from that of joint, deputy and senior assistant secretaries.
Of them, 145 joint secretaries have been made additional secretaries and 186 deputy secretaries have been promoted to the posts of joint secretary.
Besides, 205 senior assistant secretaries have been made deputy secretaries.
The public administration ministry issued separate gazette notifications to this effect.
Ministry sources said the names of another 33 officials would be published through gazettes later, as they are either abroad or on lien. The number of promoted officials would then stand at 569.
In May this year, 217 officials were promoted to the ranks of additional, joint and deputy secretaries. Earlier in June last year, the government promoted 873 officials to the three categories.
With the latest promotions, the number of additional secretaries is now 550 against 120 approved posts, that of joint secretaries 613 against 350 posts and that of deputy secretaries 1,480 against 830 posts.
The civil administration will see a further rise in the number of in-situ officials, and most of them would continue to do the same work but would enjoy additional perks.
An in-situ official is one who holds the same office and performs the same duties even after getting promoted.
Former secretary ASM Ali Kabir told The Daily Star that large-scale promotions would create indiscipline in the administration, as officials two to three times the approved number of posts are holding these positions.
“The government will have to spend extra money for them, but it won't get the desired output,” he said.
Kabir noted that if the number of officials exceeds that of approved posts, it results in chaos in the administration.
“Officials become frustrated and fail to perform well, as they have to work in the same position despite having a higher rank.”
Kabir suggested increasing the number of posts in upper tiers, elevating the positions of deputy commissioner and divisional commissioner to joint secretary and secretary, and limiting recruitment at the entry level.
Sources at the secretariat said the promotions have been given to ease commotion among the “deprived” officials, who were denied promotions several times.
Lobbying, recommendations by powerful officials as well as political and personal consideration were the key factors behind picking the names for promotion, added the sources.
However, several officials told this correspondent that they were again “deprived” of promotion as in the past.
Many of those who got promoted yesterday expressed satisfaction. Some of them said their promotions were long overdue, and that they deserved it.
Talking to reporters, State Minister for Public Administration Ismat Ara Sadique said promotions were given to those who deserved. It would take time to give new postings to all the promoted officials.
Secretariat sources said officers of three batches were given preference for promotion. Most of those made additional secretaries are from the 1986 batch.
Similarly, the 11th and 21st batches of Bangladesh Civil Service got preference for getting promoted to the posts of joint and deputy secretaries.
Superior Selection Board (SSB), which deals with promotion of public servants, prepared a list of 1,886 officials for promotion -- 587 for the post of additional secretary, 570 for that of joint secretary and 729 for that of deputy secretary, added the sources.
MORE PROMOTION IN THE OFFING
The SSB is reviewing a list of 270 officials of the 22nd batch, who are six months junior to the officials of 21st batch.
The officials of the 22nd batch are likely to be promoted within three months, said the sources.
Some of the officials told this correspondent that they have been lobbying with the public administration ministry for promotion overdue for three years.
CHANGES IN PMO
Public Administration Senior Secretary Kamal Abdul Naser Chowdhury has been made principal secretary to the Prime Minister. Naser will replace Abul Kalam Azad whose appointment will end on December 1, reports UNB.
Azad has been made principal coordinator of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the Prime Minister's Office on a contractual basis for the next three years.
The public administration ministry yesterday issued circulars in this regard.