Egg-faced Cyprus Tourism Or­gan­i­sa­tion must clear up act

E DII TO RII A L

Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -

The con­tin­u­ing saga of the Cyprus Tourism Or­gan­i­sa­tion soap opera is caus­ing ir­repara­ble dam­age to the is­land’s im­age as a tourist des­ti­na­tion and its abil­ity to host pre­mium hol­i­day­mak­ers, as well as ne­go­ti­ate with se­ri­ous tour op­er­a­tors. And it must end now.

We don’t care who said what to whom and what the petty le­gal con­tracts say when hir­ing pub­lic ser­vants. But for once, we ex­pect se­nior of­fi­cers and (past and present) board mem­bers to take re­spon­si­bil­ity for their ac­tions, for which they are duty-bound to the gen­eral pub­lic. After all, if there are cases of mis­ap­pro­pri­a­tion of pub­lic funds (a popular ac­tiv­ity at all gov­ern­ment and semi-state bod­ies) then those at fault should be fired and re­placed by the most suit­able per­son for that job.

Where is the name-and-shame pol­icy that those in power bla­tantly de­clared a few years back? Is it be­cause that those in the wrong run to their po­lit­i­cal and ide­o­log­i­cal lead­ers to ex­punge any ref­er­ence to their name in re­turn for po­lit­i­cal (and fam­ily) favours?

We find our­selves in the same mess as with the whole ad­ven­ture sur­round­ing the ap­point­ments of the most re­cent Cen­tral Bank Gover­nors, at a time when Cyprus desperately needed to project an im­age of fi­nan­cial sta­bil­ity and eco­nomic har­mony.

Our in­com­pe­tent politi­cians do not re­alise that the present drama at the CTO and else­where is the re­sult of decades of pan­der­ing to union threats and de­mands, after which labour agree­ments were ad­justed year by year, mak­ing it im­pos­si­ble to sack pub­lic ser­vants. Fur­ther­more, con­sec­u­tive ad­min­is­tra­tions can­not be taken se­ri­ously if those in­ves­ti­gat­ing the vi­o­la­tions are the same peo­ple who de­cide on pro­mo­tions in the pub­lic sec­tor.

It is the con­trol of the trade unions that brought us to our present-day chaos and politi­cians have yet to learn from their mis­takes, as they con­tinue to give in to bul­ly­ing tac­tics, be they with the pub­lic doc­tors and nurses, or teach­ers, with their re­wards never linked to pro­duc­tiv­ity. De­spite the on­go­ing cri­sis, some peo­ple even have the au­dac­ity to de­mand per­ma­nent jobs and pay rises, to­gether with the perks they have en­joyed over decades.

Is there any­one out there with the courage to take im­me­di­ate de­ci­sions?

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