Ministry in disgrace

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Ministry in disgrace

The lack of discipline among civil servants boggles the mind. Consider the far-fetched excuses made by current and previous employees at the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs, who claimed work-related injuries in order to receive benefits.

These included: “I harmed my lower back while sorting out papers,” and “As my boss died I am suffering from a panic disorder.” These flimsy excuses were accepted and the people who made them were regarded as having contributed to the country. They received all types of benefits, including school fees for their children.

The Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs is supposed to protect and compensate those who sacrifice themselves for the country and their families.

Civil servants in this ministry must have especially strong ethical values and integrity. But they are just the opposite. In a effort to improve the injury evaluation system last year, outside experts were named to five out of nine judges’ posts. But before that, all nine judges were from the department.

They approved brazen excuses with few questions. As a result, the number of people in the Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs who receive government benefits for sustaining injuries in the course of working for the country was nearly 30 times more than in other government bodies.

In November last year, wrongdoings by the head of the ministry were revealed. After a recent internal investigation, 24 out of 92 people were removed from the list.

This case has infuriated the general public and should be made a priority. The ministry completed its second investigation in January but tried to cover up the results.

Even after the scandal was divulged, it said it would not make employees return school fees that had already been paid out. The ministry is still trying to protect members who did wrong.

The Board of Audit and Inspection must investigate the case more thoroughly.

The system must be reformed. A civil worker who concocts a far-fetched excuse to claim benefits must be severely punished.

Civil servants who were injured while at work must be separated from those who fought for the country’s independence and those who receive merits for their military service. It is despicable that some civil servants would try to pass themselves off as having being injured while in service to receive the same benefits as people who fought for the country’s freedom.

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