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Temporary jobs would replace contracts for the provision of services

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Temporary jobs would replace contracts for the provision of services

Temporary jobs or plants would be a figure aimed at fighting against job insecurity and the privatization of public employment, according to what César Manrique, director of the Administrative Department of Public Function, told EL TIEMPO. He also added that the entity is advancing this proposal with in order to provide salary equality and labor benefits.

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This form of contracting is stipulated in article 21 of Law 909 of 2004, in charge of setting the guidelines that regulate public employment.

The issue gained special relevance after the Government issued a presidential directive with which it will seek drastically reduce contracts for the provision of services.

This directive establishes that they are only carried out if they are “strictly necessary”, either due to the volume of work or the need for specialized knowledge. In addition, it establishes that hiring must be justified.

(…) The need for these contracts must be justified in detail, case by case, in the pre-contractual documents, among others, with process figures, number of projects, monthly management, reasons for the complexity of the service to be contracted and the time during which this support will be required, which in no case will have a permanent vocation“, the document points out.

Proposal to replace them

That is why Public Function, the body in charge of managing all the hiring of public servants in the country, proposes use the figure of temporary jobs.

According to the legislation, the creation of temporary personnel plants must have four conditions: that they be functions that plant personnel do not perform, that they have a determined duration, that they meet personnel needs due to work overload and, lastly, that they have a duration not exceeding twelve months.

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With this possible decision, it would be sought to have technical potential and administrative capacity to be able to execute public policies. “What it is about is to technify, to professionalize the Public Administration, so that it complies with a greater institutional capacity”, assured Manrique.

Temporary jobs and meritocracy

Temporary employment would also be a tool to fight against ‘hand-picking’. According to the director of the entity, “it is not about hiring randomly or subjectively; but a planned hiring has to be done, developing procedures to establish whether or not they are needed and how many officials”.

Precisely, the legislation establishes that to access a transitory plant it is necessary to enter the list of eligible of the National Civil Service Commission. This entity is in charge of promoting equality and merit when entering a public position.

For example, recently the Office of the Attorney General of the Nation drew the attention of the Mayor’s Office of Cali, since this ororganization signed 75,509 contracts between January 2020 and June 2022, which meant a cost of more than 2.8 billion pesos. This form of labor affiliation usually bypasses the contractor screening stages.

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According to the Attorney General’s Office, in 2021 this Mayor’s Office paid 1.5 billion pesos in direct contracts, while for jobs that were offered through a competitive process, allocated 437,175 million pesos.

Monitoring of contracts for the provision of services

The Public Administration is currently in the process of collecting data on contracts for the provision of services in state entities. For this, the delivery deadline was September 23, although due to delays obliged to increase it until the 26th of the same month.

We are going to cross all the expenses, because there was an underreporting of contracts for the provision of services that were not reported to us”, affirmed Manrique in this regard.

Although the exact figure is not yet known, the director of the Public Administration assured that It would deal with between 500,000 and 650,000 contracts under this modality. Precisely, Manrique says that, to achieve the transition to this model of temporary employment, the money destined to cover the contracts for the provision of services can be used.

In relation to the above, the communication medium ‘Vorágine’ made public some documents sent by the Administrative Department of the Presidency of the Republic (Dapre) in which the expenses in parallel payrolls are revealed, mainly for the provision of services, during the 2021 and 2022.

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The director of Dapre, Mauricio Lizcano, told the media that the Duque government’s spending during 2021 was 4 billion pesos in this contracting modality. In addition, the medium found that, when adding both years, the figure rose to 7.9 trillion.

In 2021, the Seine spent more than one billion pesos on parallel payroll, which is almost triple that of Defense (the second entity that spent the most). In addition, the Inclusion sector used almost the same money as Environment and Development, Education and Finance combined.

As for the parallel payrolls for 2022, the Seine was once again the entity that spent the most money on this type of contracting and, different from the previous year, Defense used less money than Agriculture. However, these two items continue to allocate more money to contracting of parallel payrolls than the union of the last five.

Precisely, the decision of President Gustavo Petro to ask his ministries to reduce this item is combined with the request to eliminate about 30% of contracts for service provision, once the activities expire.

At the moment, temporary employment is a proposal that the entity is evaluating and it hopes to have the consolidation of contracts for the provision of services soon, in order to know how much such a transition might cost and its feasibility.

ANDRES PINEDA
EL TIEMPO SCHOOL OF MULTIMEDIA JOURNALISM

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