Ombudsman probes claims of ‘unfair’ laying off in parliament

KIGALI - The Office of the Ombudsman is investigating claims by two former parliamentary employees that their dismissal was engineered by “their enemies in the House.”The employees, Moise Rusingizwa and Baudoin Ngo Bwanakweli, were fired last year by the Ministry of Public Service and Labor following an evaluation exercise by the Civil Service.
WROTE TO PARLIAMENT: Ombudsman Tito Rutaremara
WROTE TO PARLIAMENT: Ombudsman Tito Rutaremara

KIGALI - The Office of the Ombudsman is investigating claims by two former parliamentary employees that their dismissal was engineered by “their enemies in the House.”

The employees, Moise Rusingizwa and Baudoin Ngo Bwanakweli, were fired last year by the Ministry of Public Service and Labor following an evaluation exercise by the Civil Service.

The exercise that started in July last year, was aimed at assessing civil servants’ competence; those who didn’t measure up were dropped.

Employees who scored 70% and above during the exercise were supposed to be retained by their respective institutions.

Sources from the Office of Ombudsman told The NewTimes yesterday that the two employees had performed highly and scored beyond the required 70%.

Ombudsman Tito Rutaremara wrote to Parliament on January 19, demanding an explanation as to why the two employees had been fired yet they scored above the required grade.

Rutaremara’s letter, a copy of which The NewTimes has obtained, also directed the Parliament not to advertise the posts until the matter is fully investigated.

The Ombudsman wants an explanation within 30 days. His letter is also copied to the Speaker of Parliament, Rose Mukantabana.

Parliament’s Permanent Secretary, Immaculee Mukamurangwa confirmed the development when contacted yesterday.

“I think there was a problem because the employees in question had scored highly. We are handling this case with Ombudsman,” said Mukamurangwa, who is the immediate former deputy Ombudsman.

Rutaremara’s letter comes months after irregularities had been cited in the last year’s civil service evaluation exercise.

In August last year, a probe team composed of officials from ministries of Local Government and Public Service and Labor was put in place to investigate the alleged purging claims in some districts.

The employees had alleged that members of the evaluation panel used the exercise to eliminate employees thought to be unfriendly.

Districts where the evaluation exercises were allegedly conducted unfairly included Rulindo, Bugesera, Ngororero and Rubavu.

Former Local Government Minister, Christopher Bazivamu confirmed last year that the evaluation exercise in some districts was flawed.

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