Press officers posts slashed
ISLAMABAD- The government has slashed by almost fifty percent the number of posts of Press officers in Pakistan’s diplomatic missions abroad. An informed official told that there were a total of twenty- four press ministers or attaches in foreign missions out of which as many as 11 posts have been scrapped forthwith.
However, he said the government has kept intact its decision to appoint officers of the Information Ministry on these foreign positions and turned down a proposal, vigorously pursued by the Foreign Ministry, to allocate these posts to the officials of the foreign service.
A post of Director General has been created in the Foreign Office where an officer of the Information Group would be appointed in order to bring about better liaison and coordination with the Foreign Ministry about the working and functioning of the Press ministers and attaches, posted abroad.
These decisions were taken in a recent meeting, presided over by Chief Executive General Pervez Musharraf, in which a committee headed by a serving Lieutenant General presented its report about restructuring and downsizing of the foreign missions. It was decided to abolish some foreign missions in a bid to cut expenditure considerably. The official said the Press ministers and attaches would not be given any assisting staff including stenographer or steno typist, and they themselves would have to do all the secretarial work.
For the past some time, the vacancies of Press ministers or attaches are lying vacant in Pakistan’s diplomatic missions in Japan, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia, Britain, New York, Washington, South Africa, Tashkent and Nairobi. The official said some of these posts have also been dispensed with. He said the whole exercise was meant to reduce expenditure incurring on foreign mission.
Source: The Nation