The former Minister of National Security said that he was at an advanced stage in the work to transform his ministry and its departments, but was met with resistance while trying to enhance the quality of senior staff members at the administrative level.
Key to these new measures explained Mr. Condor, during a radio address on Monday 5th September, 2011, was a request by him to the Prime Minister, Dr. Denzil Douglas, to re-assign the Permanent Secretary attached to the Ministry, Mrs. Astona Browne.
The Deputy Prime Minister admitted that he did conclude that it was practically impossible to achieve his objectives with what he called, ‘an Accounting Officer’ whom he charged was not following the protocol of the public sector, and was at times, making policy without even consulting him or advising on the proposed changes.
“For these reasons along with other public concerns, and after careful deliberation, I requested that I be given the opportunity to identify a new Permanent Secretary, in an effort to take the Ministry forward,” said Mr. Condor.
However, instead of being granted his wish by the Prime Minister, to identify a replacement for Mrs. Browne, the decision was taken to remove him instead, as the Minister of National Security.
The former National Security Minister said that his boss’ decision to ignore his request has left him to conclude that he (Condor) was sacrificed instead.
The latest fallout between the top two members of the Labour Administration is only a continuation of a relationship that for years seems to have been getting worse. Additionally, Condor’s claims of the Prime Minister frustrating the work of his ministry and trying to dictate who should be on his staff is also not new.
It was last year, in a letter dated 25th November, 2010, that Condor sent correspondence to the Prime Minister saying, “Sadly, I must write to you following our discussions last evening, (24th November), which for the most part, was a sad reflection of the disregard and disrespect you continue to demonstrate regarding my ability to make fundamental decisions in my various Ministries”.
In his letter last year, Condor also went on to accuse Dr. Douglas of disrespect, saying “I specifically take great offense therefore, to the manner in which you continue to try to impose your choices and dictates in utter disrespect and in autocratic manner on my Ministries”.