The Malta Independent 30 May 2024, Thursday
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PN accuses Finance Minister of deception over public sector numbers

Malta Independent Tuesday, 16 September 2014, 13:39 Last update: about 11 years ago

The Nationalist Party is accusing Finance Minister Edward Scicluna of attempting to deceive the public in an attempt to conceal a steep increase in the number of public sector workers under a Labour government.

In a statement, the party’s finance spokesman Tonio Fenech noted that Prof. Scicluna attributed the increase to a reclassification which led to a number of construction sector workers being considered to be civil servants.

But Mr Fenech noted that the minister failed to point out that the National Statistics Office had clarified that this reclassification was not being considered when it calculated that the number of public sector workers increased by over 2,100 between March 2013 and April 2014.

The MP observed that since an average of 1,500 civil servants retire or leave the public sector every year, the Labour government has ultimately employed more than 3,600 people in the public sector in a little over a year.

Mr Fenech said that the PN expressed its solidarity with NSO employees, stating that they were being subjected to strong and constant political pressure concerning the publication of statistics that are not favourable to the present government.

The party also appealed to the government to fully respect the independence of this office as it had an important role in presenting an accurate picture of the state of the economy. Instead of trying to silence those who are carrying out their duties and trying to draw attention to the real situation faced by the country, Mr Fenech added, it would be better for the government to try to solve existing problems.

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