Contract employees await government’s decision, raise concerns about fixed term and job security as para-regular employees

The government has yet to announce a final decision regarding the regularisation of contract employees. During the recent Meet the Press, the prime minister said that the Royal Civil Service Commission wrote to the Cabinet with a recommendation to merge regular and consolidated contract employees as para-regular employees. Without any concrete decision, for now, contract employees are concerned about the contract duration and job security of para-regular employees.

Earlier this year, the Prime Minister’s Office said that one of the main reasons for issuing the executive order to study the viability of regularisation of contract employees was considering the lengthy duration most contract employees have served in various positions. Some have worked as contract employees for more than a decade.

BBS talked to contract employees, mostly teachers. They said they are worried about the lack of clarity on fixed term and job security.

“Recently, we heard a news saying that the government will merge the contract employees as para-regular employees and we are happy about it. However, we are a bit worried about job security,” said a contract employee.

“After the government’s executive order, we were hoping that we would get the same benefits and access to loans and job security.  I have no problem regarding the RCSC’s recommendation of merging the contract employees as para-regular employees. However, we are unsure about the duration of the fixed term for para-regular employees,” said another contract employee.

The government during the election campaign pledged that all contract employees who are regularised as para-regular employees will have same benefits as civil servants, that is home ownership, salary raise and allowances including provident fund and gratuity benefits.

The RCSC was contacted on the rationale behind the para-regular recommendation.

The commission said to encourage contract employees to join the civil service as regular employees, their seniority will be retained if they pass the Bhutan Civil Service Exam.

They added that they have also removed the ceiling for the number of attempts to appear preliminary and main examinations.

There are about 5,000 individuals on contract in the civil service.

Sonam Yuden

Edited by Tshering Zam  

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