Saturday 18 May 2024
Select a region

Chief Minister and CEO apologise for second job "oversight"

Chief Minister and CEO apologise for second job

Friday 30 October 2020

Chief Minister and CEO apologise for second job "oversight"

Friday 30 October 2020

The Chief Minister and the Chief Executive have both apologised for the "oversight" in not gaining proper permission for the top civil servant's second job at a UK real estate firm - and the former has now launched a Government-wide review into how conflicts of interest are managed.

In a statement issued this afternoon, the States Employment Board (SEB) expressed their "utmost disappointment" to have not been "consulted or informed" in advance of Mr Parker accepting a role as Non-Executive Director at New River in September.

The SEB is a panel of politicians that officially acts as 'Employer' to all public sector workers and sets their pay and terms of conditions. The law states that at least three members must be present at a meeting for a decision to be made.

However, Mr Parker's appointment was only sanctioned by the SEB Chair, the Chief Minister - despite his contract stating that any positions outside of his role as CEO should be confirmed in writing by his 'Employer'.


Pictured: The relevant part of Mr Parker's contract, which was made public by Express.

Following a crisis meeting last night, the SEB has now directed that the "administrative shortcomings are corrected immediately."

They added: "...and should any potential conflict of interest arise, this would be brought to our attention without delay."

Just minutes after that statement was issued, the Government released a letter from Mr Parker to the Chief Minister dated 29 October.

It also confirms that - as Express previously reported - that the Deputy Chief Minister, Senator Lyndon Farnham, did not fully agree with the appointment, despite the Government saying that he had cleared it alongside the Chief Minister.


Pictured: Senator Farnham (left) was not happy with the New River appointment, despite the Government previously saying he had sanctioned it.

The letter from Mr Parker describes him as having expressed "some reservations and concerns as to how the appointment might be received among some quarters in Jersey."

In his letter, the CEO also acknowledges that his appointment should have been "formalised in writing" before September when it was announced to the Stock Exchange, but said that this had not occurred due to "overlapping circumstances, both personal and related to Government priorities."

In an extraordinary step, the Chief Minister has now pledged to launch a Government-wide review of how conflicts of interest are dealt with.

"As an additional result of this matter, and the concerns raised by some States Members, the public and media, I will be launching a Government-wide review of the management of conflicts of interest. I will also be making a formal statement to the States Assembly on this matter on Monday 2 November," he said.

The review pledge coincides with Deputy Jeremy Maçon putting forward a proposal to request that the SEB and Council of Ministers "review the existing rules, policies and guidance relating to the ability of public sector workers to secure or hold employment that is secondary or additional to their employment with the States of Jersey."

He confirmed to Express that he "had no discussion with the Chief Minister on the matter" and that he lodged the proposition with the States Greffe last night after being contacted by a number of concerned constituents, whom he thanked for taking their time express their views on the matter.

In a report accompanying his review proposal, he writes: "It is one thing for, say, a manual worker to gain some extra hours working in a pub, or a nurse to gain extra hours in the private sector. But it is completely another thing for the most senior members of staff to take on other roles that may put them in potential conflict with their duties... 

"In these situations, one always tries to avoid discussion about an individual.

"It seems to be that the rules surrounding this area need to be updated and, in particular, that the rules regarding senior roles need to be more stringent."

Express has asked whether the Chief Minister is planning on an independent review or whether he plans to support the request by Deputy Maçon, which is currently scheduled for debate by States Members in December.

Follow Express for updates... 

CLICK TO READ: Charlie Parker's letter to the Chief Minister...



Government defends CEO's extra £50k job

"The CEO is almost acting independently"

Gov CEO's second job salary 'to go to charity'

Did Gov CEO have correct permission for second job?

Sign up to newsletter



Comments on this story express the views of the commentator only, not Bailiwick Publishing. We are unable to guarantee the accuracy of any of those comments.

You have landed on the Bailiwick Express website, however it appears you are based in . Would you like to stay on the site, or visit the site?