Congress aims to prevent civil service severance payments for promotions

The permanent commission in Congress is expected to approve a bill today that will prohibit severance payments for civil servants who leave a position due to a promotion, the president of Congress, Cesar Zumaeta, said.

“This topic is the first point on the agenda. We are going to debate it and I hope that it will be approved. The opinions that I’ve heard are in favor [of the bill],” state news agency Andina reported Zumaeta as saying.

The bill aims to prevent cases like that of Fernando Barrios, the former president of Essalud who charged the state institution close to 198,000 soles (around $70,000) in severance pay benefits when he left last year to become a cabinet minister in President Alan Garcia’s government.

Barrios was forced to resign as Interior minister within weeks of his appointment and returned the funds to Essalud in a cashier’s check after the payment was revealed by newspaper Peru.21.

In addition, Barrios’ then head of administration, Edelmira Barrantes, who followed Barrios to the Interior Ministry as the deputy minister of institutional management, received 64,856 soles for “arbitrary dismissal,” and another 80,000 soles for labor rights.

“I hope we can tackle this topic tomorrow because it is a typical law to fight corruption,” Zumaeta said.  The commission will then present the bill to the floor of the House for a vote.

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