Designate appointees to fill three vacant diplomatic posts overseas have been described as “a laughable joke”.
Local veteran journalist Alfred Sasako has claimed in a newspaper article yesterday that Doreen Kuper has been picked for the Taiwan office, Dr Fred Isom for the United Nations, while Warren Paia for Canberra.
Sasako claimed in the article the selections were made without prior knowledge of the Prime Minister who is currently overseas.
The revelation sent social network discussions into overdrive.
The diplomatic posts have been left vacant for over a year since the predecessors left office at the end of their terms.
A source claimed the appointments clearly demonstrate the increasing trend of political influence over matters which should have been done under established procedures.
He said gone are the days when Permanent Secretaries and overseas diplomatic mission heads were appointed through career paths.
He questioned the appointments of retired elders when there are so many young energetic people who are capable of performing duties of those offices readily available in the country.
The source said the appointments clearly point to nepotism and favouritism.
One source explained to the Sunday Star that the right process to appoint overseas diplomats is by going through the Parliamentary Foreign Relations Committee.
“The Parliamentary Foreign Relations Committee receives names from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs who then selects the best candidates from an elimination process.
“The Committee will then submit its recommended appointees to the Prime Minister who is vested with the prerogative to approve or reject the recommendation,” he said.
By BRADFORD THEONOMI