Chief Personnel Officer (CPO) Dr Daryl Dindial. –
A victory for the Chief Personnel Officer (CPO) against customs officers will save the State hundreds of millions of dollars.
A media release from the office of the Commander Dr Daryl Dindial on Friday reported that the matter which arose out of the payment of overtime hours for monthly paid civil service officers in the Tobago House of Assembly and statutory bodies. Dindial successfully argued his case before a special three-day tribunal set up to hear the case.
The Public Service Association (PSA) reported the dispute to the tribunal, arguing that overtime rates were not computed in accordance with Circular No 3 of 2008.
But Dindial said the circular did not apply to customs and excise division officers as the parties agreed that special arrangements for overtime would be maintained.
The release also reported that the PSA’s only witness, first vice president Stephen Thomas, admitted that the PSA did not intend to disturb the special arrangements for overtime payment to customs officers when negotiating on the terms of a memorandum of agreement.
Dindial noted that Thomas’ remarks allowed for a no-case submission to be made, arguing that it was not in the interest of justice for the matter to continue.
He said Thomas’ admission weakened the case of the PSA which claimed the memorandum of agreement changed the special arrangements for the calculation of overtime.
According to the release, the decision handed down by the tribunal saved the State from having to pay $750 million to $1 billion in additional overtime payouts.