Governance, Elections, Advocacy, and Research Services GEARS Initiative is troubled with the continued stay in office of Secretary to Cabinet in view of the provision of Article 176 (3) which demands a 10 year experience qualification as Permanent Secretary or equivalent to serve as Secretary to Cabinet which the current portfolio holder seems not to possess.
Gears Executive Director MacDonald Chipenzi says clearly, Article 176, stipulates how the office holder to the office of Secretary to Cabinet is appointed, her/his qualifications and experiences, functions, tenure of office which is five (5) years renewable and vacation which is by resignation.
Mr. Chipenzi explains that Secretary to Cabinet is appointed by the President in consultation with the Civil Service Commission subject to ratification by the National Assembly.
He states that GEARS’s interest is in Clause 3 which states that “a person qualifies to be appointed as Secretary to the Cabinet if that person has or had at least ten years experience as a Permanent Secretary or equivalent.
He however says, perusing through Dr. Ronald Msiska’s civil service journey especially at Permanent Secretary and its equivalent levels, there seems to be a mismatch in years served, as Permanent Secretary or equivalent as per current republican Constitution served only two years which are far short the constitutional requirement.
Mr. Chipenzi says public records are that Dr Msiska was first appointed and sworn in to the position of Permanent Secretary- Public Service Division on October 10, 2011 and in less than a year later, he was appointed and sworn in as Deputy Secretary to Cabinet which is equivalent on July 10, 2012.
He discloses that in February, 2013 he was again appointed and sworn in as Secretary to the Cabinet, the position he still holds to date.