THE Civil Service Association (CSA) has broken its silence on the proposed Border Management Authority that has one section of its membership worried.
At a follow-up meeting the CSA held with its Customs and Excise Branch on Tuesday (August 28) members continued to express concerns about the proposed Authority and the plans to create a Statutory Corporation.
Notwithstanding a meeting held with the Honourable Prime Minister and a subsequent letter from the Permanent Secretary/Director of Finance, Customs Officers have not been convinced that the Government is acting in good faith.
According to a CSA press release yesterday, information provided from the Cabinet Conclusion 247 0f 2018 specifically refers to the establishment of the St. Lucia Border Management Authority as a Statutory Board.
“IIn the absence of an amendment to that Cabinet Conclusion to say otherwise,”, CSA General Secretary Claude Paul says, “we believe that the intention of Government remains unchanged.”
In a press statement yesterday afternoon, the CSA General Secretary, himself a former Comptroller of Customs, said, “There have been contradictory statements made by the Prime Minister and other senior officials that add confusion in the minds of our members, who remain steadfast in their view that the position as stated in the Cabinet Conclusion is NOT appropriate for revenue collection and law enforcement purposes.”
According to Paul, “We have taken note that there are no similar structures operating in any part of the region and those other reform initiatives involving Customs have been strongly resisted in places like Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados.”
“Therefore,” the General Secretary said, “the CSA and the members of the Customs and Excise Branch have stated their intention to remain resolute and will be considering all available legal options to defend its position against this ill-conceived initiative.” Read more on this story.