The government will not back down on its Troika-driven decision to implement new working hours in the public sector from September 1, Finance Minister Haris Georgiades said yesterday.
Commenting on criticism by the Civil Servants’ Union ( Pasidy) for making the decision without first consulting them, Georgiades said the new working hours were unanimously passed by Parliament eight months ago.
“We have done nothing new these days,” the minister said wondering why the issue was raised a week before its implementation.
The new working hours for civil servants are from 8am until 3.30pm or from 9am until 4.30pm.
The new working hours only differ by 30 minutes for either starting work or finishing the day from the current arrangement-they do not extend the number of hours worked.
The Finance Ministry issued a decree calling on all government departments to implement the new working hours.
But Pasidy expressed its intention to take action against the decision arguing that the provision in the memorandum signed between the government and its international lenders regarding the public sectors’ amended working hours was only for a specific period.
That is January 1-August 31 so as to give the government and the union time to discuss it in detail.
The union also said that a detailed report drafted jointly by the ministry and Pasidy shows that the goals set by the memorandum of understanding are covered with the existing working hours both in terms of cost-cutting and of public service.