The fall-out from the Government CEO Charlie Parker’s second job is continuing, with the Chief Minister now considering how to respond to a report on a communications blunder that saw his Deputy wrongly stated as having approved the controversial New River role.
After news broke of Mr Parker’s Non-executive Directorship at the UK real estate firm, the Government released a statement saying that the role was “cleared by the Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister.”
But it later emerged that the Deputy Chief Minister, Senator Lyndon Farnham (pictured top, centre), was not in favour of the second job and had instead expressed "reservations and concerns as to how the appointment might be received among some quarters in Jersey."
After the announcement that Mr Parker had "agreed" to step down over the saga and himself having survived a vote of no confidence, Senator Le Fondré confirmed that neither himself or Senator Farnham had approved the press release and launched an investigation to "find out exactly, blow-by-blow, what happened and when" within the Communications team.
He confirmed to Express last night that he had now received that report - which he declined to release into the public domain - and was considering his next steps.
Pictured: A review of communications processes in Government is underway.
In the meantime, he said that the Government's Communications team has been tasked with tightening up its processes.
"I have now received an update from the Director of Communications on this matter, which I am presently considering. In the meantime, the Communications Directorate and Ministerial Support Unit will be working together on enhanced protocols to improve processes for sign-off by Ministers," the Chief Minister commented.
"As the update is on internal processes, it is not appropriate to share this externally at this time, however we will make the enhanced protocols public documents in due course."
The latest chapter in the saga coincides with a response to a Freedom of Information (FOI) request from Express asking for Mr Parker's written requests and permission for both his second role at New River and on the Buckingham Palace Reservicing Board.
Pictured: The relevant part of Mr Parker's contract.
However, in reply to the FOI request, the Government said, "We do not hold this information," and added that Article 10 of the Freedom of Information Law applied.
Article 10 is a legal obligation to tell the applicant if the information requested does not exist on file.
Deputy Inna Gardiner, who is Chair of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), which is the only Scrutiny Panel with direct responsibility for holding the island's top civil servant to account, said her team would be taking the FOI response into account in their upcoming review of the saga.
PAC's next public hearing with the CEO is scheduled for 7 December.
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