FPSC delays interviews after members’ retirement
By Mohammad Imran
ISLAMABAD: The sudden retirement of three out of five Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) members has resulted in the commission delaying the interviews, earlier scheduled to be held from August 29 onwards.
The members’ retirement comes in the wake of a presidential ordinance reducing the service tenure of members from five to three years. According to the amended Ordinance a member of the commission shall hold office for a term of three years from the date on which he enters upon office or till turns 65. Legally, the FPSC chairman and members have job security like that of the members of the superior judiciary. Like judges, the FPSC chairman could only be prematurely removed through the Supreme Judicial Council.
The commission on Sunday also issued a press release announcing the cancellation of the interviews without any mention of a new date. Sources said that the new interview date will be fixed after the appointment of new members, including a female member.
According to sources, the move to reduce the service tenures was initiated by Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz. Sources believe that the reduction in the tenure of FPSC chairman and members was aimed at the chairman, who had refused to fall in line with the government’s diktat. Also, the commission for the last several months refused to issue no objection certificates in most of the cases referred to it by the government for extensions in contract appointments.
The three retiring members are Gul Hameed, Justice (r) Abdur Rehman Khan and Javed Akram. Gul Hameed, belonging to the Pakistan Foreign Service, was appointed for five years on November 1, 2001 and retired immediately after the promulgation of the ordinance, where he otherwise would have retired on October 31, 2006.