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Written Answers to Questions

Thursday 11 May 1995

FOREIGN AND COMMONWEALTH AFFAIRS

Conflicts of Interest

Mr. Milburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on how many occasions during the last five years (a) civil servants and (b) special advisers in his Department or its agencies have declared conflicts of interest; and how many instructions have been issued about their retention, disposal or management.      [21385]

Mr. Goodlad [holding answer 1 May 1995]: Any conflict of interest involving civil servants and special advisers would have been dealt with in accordance with the established guidance. Records of the number of cases are not held centrally.

Indonesia

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on what date he sought assurances from the Government of Indonesia that theAR325 three-dimensional radar sensors with data display and handling systems supplied by Plessey Radar would not be deployed in East Timor.      [23250]

Mr. Goodlad: We received general assurances from the Indonesian Government on 8 June 1994 that British defence equipment would not be used for internal repression in East Timor.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on what dates he sought assurances from the Government of Indonesia that British-supplied defence equipment would not be used against (a) the GAM (Aceh), (b) the OPM--West Papua, Irian Jaya--and (c) FRETELIN--East Timor.      [23238]

Mr. Goodlad: We received assurances from the Indonesian Government on 8 June 1994 that British-supplied defence equipment would not be used against civilians in East Timor or in Indonesia.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many Indonesian military personnel have been funded by his Department to attend courses in the United Kingdom through the United Kingdom military training assistance scheme in each year since 1 January 1990.      [23246]

Mr. Goodlad: Details of military training between ourselves and individual countries are confidential between Governments.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on what date he sought an assurance from the Indonesian Government that Hawk aircraft would not be used for internal security purposes.      [23254]

Mr. Goodlad: On 24 June 1993.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on which date he sought an


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assurance from the Indonesian Government that British- supplied defence equipment would not be used for internal security purposes.      [23236]

Mr. Goodlad: We have on several occasions, most recently on 2 February 1995, sought the assurance of the Indonesian Government that British-supplied defence equipment would not be used for internal repression in Indonesia and East Timor.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many official visitors to the United Kingdom from Indonesia were funded by his Department in 1994; and if he will list the dates of their stay in the United Kingdom.      [23252]

Mr. Goodlad: Two; on 8 to 11 July.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on which date he last sought assurance from the Government of Indonesia that British-supplied defence equipment would not be deployed in East Timor.      [23240]

Mr. Goodlad: On 2 February 1995.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on which date he was made aware that British-supplied Hawk aircraft were in service with one of the Indonesian air force's two counter- insurgency squadrons.      [23248]

Mr. Goodlad: The British-supplied Hawk aircraft is in use with the Indonesian air force as a jet trainer.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on which date he asked for assurances from the Government of Indonesia that the former Royal Navy supply ship, the Green Rover, would not be deployed in the territorial waters of East Timor.      [23239]

Mr. Goodlad: Specific assurances on the use of this equipment were not sought.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if the phrase "internal security purposes", used in his answer of 9 February 1994 to the hon. Member for Monklands, West (Mr. Clarke), Official Report , column 283 , includes activities by the Indonesian armed forces in East Timor.      [23255]

Mr. Goodlad: As I explained in my reply to the hon. Member for Monklands, West (Mr. Clarke) on 9 February 1994, column 283 , the Indonesian Government have given us assurances that Hawk aircraft will not be used for internal security purposes. By their own definition, this includes activities by the Indonesian armed forces in the territory of East Timor.

We have never recognised Indonesia's annexation of East Timor.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the phrase "civilian population", as used in his answer of 9 February 1994 to the hon. Member for Monklands, West, (Mr. Clarke), Official Report, column 283 , in terms of its application to the populations in Indonesia and East Timor.      [23253]

Mr. Goodlad: The use of the term "civilian population" was intended to demonstrate our policy of not licensing for export to Indonesia any equipment which we


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consider likely to be used for internal repression in East Timor or Indonesia.

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs on what dates he sought assurances from the Government of Indonesia that British-supplied defence equipment would not be deployed in East Timor (a) on land, (b) in its territorial waters and (c) in its airspace.      [23237]

Mr. Goodlad: We have received assurances from the Indonesian Government, on a number of occasions, that British-supplied defence equipment would not be used for internal repression in East Timor. In the case of the Scorpion armoured vehicles, announced by my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade on 2 March 1995, column 716, the Indonesian Government assured us on 2 February 1995 that these vehicles would not be deployed in East Timor.


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Overseas Missions (Staff)

Dr. Howells: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many staff, and at what grades, who were not employed in entry clearance work were in post in (a) New York, (b) Moscow, (c) St. Petersburg, (d) Accra, (e) Lagos, (f) Abuja, (g) New Delhi, (h) Bombay, (j) Calcutta, (k) Madras, (l) Dhaka, (m) Islamabad, (n) Karachi and (o) Colombo in the financial years (i) 1992 93, (ii) 1993 94 and (iii) 1994 95 to the latest convenient date.      [22647]

Mr. Goodlad [holding answer of 9 May 1995]: Details of the staff at the 14 overseas missions listed who are not employed in entry clearance work are given in the table. These figures include some service attache s and staff from other Government Departments and agencies for whom the FCO is not financially responsible. Separate tables are provided for the financial years 1992 93, 1993 94 and 1994 95.


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Staff numbers not employed in entry clearance work-1992-93                                                                                                                                 

                 |Head of Post    |Minister        |Counsellor      |First Secretary |Second Secretary|Third Secretary |Support         |LE              |Total                            

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Abuja            |-               |-               |-               |3               |2               |1               |2               |33.5            |41.5                             

Accra            |1               |-               |2               |3               |3               |8               |4               |80.5            |101.5                            

Bombay           |1               |-               |-               |2               |1               |2               |1               |62              |69                               

Calcutta         |1               |-               |-               |-               |-               |-               |-               |46              |47                               

Colombo          |1               |-               |1               |1               |3               |6               |5               |71.5            |88.5                             

Dhaka            |1               |-               |2               |5               |4               |15              |5               |82.5            |114.5                            

Islamabad        |1               |-               |4               |10              |6               |14              |12              |123             |170                              

Karachi          |1               |-               |-               |-               |-               |1               |1               |52              |55                               

Lagos            |1               |-               |2               |3               |7               |12              |6               |161             |192                              

Madras           |1               |-               |-               |-               |1               |-               |-               |15.5            |17.5                             

Moscow           |1               |1               |8               |10              |17              |19              |23              |79              |158                              

New Delhi        |1               |1               |7               |21              |15              |8               |14              |267             |334                              

New York         |2               |0               |4               |8               |5               |8               |2               |107             |136                              

St. Petersburg   |1               |-               |-               |1               |-               |-               |2               |10              |14                               


Staff numbers not employed in entry clearance work-1993-94                                                                                                                                 

                 |Head of Post    |Minister        |Counsellor      |First Secretary |Second Secretary|Third Secretary |Support         |LE              |Total                            

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Abuja            |1               |-               |-               |3               |2               |2               |4               |33.5            |45.5                             

Accra            |1               |-               |2               |3               |3               |7               |4               |81.5            |101.5                            

Bombay           |1               |-               |-               |2               |1               |2               |1               |63              |70                               

Calcutta         |1               |-               |-               |-               |1               |-               |-               |46              |48                               

Colombo          |1               |-               |1               |1               |3               |6               |5               |71.5            |88.5                             

Dhaka            |1               |-               |2               |5               |4               |15              |5               |94.5            |126.5                            

Islamabad        |1               |-               |4               |10              |6               |14              |12              |123             |170                              

Karachi          |1               |-               |-               |1               |1               |2               |2               |52              |59                               

Lagos            |1               |-               |2               |3               |7               |13              |6               |169             |201                              

Madras           |1               |-               |-               |-               |1               |-               |-               |15.5            |17.5                             

Moscow           |1               |1               |8               |10.5            |17              |20              |23              |91              |171.5                            

New Delhi        |1               |1               |6               |20              |15              |7               |14              |267             |331                              

New York         |2               |-               |4               |7               |8               |10              |2               |105             |138                              

St. Petersburg   |1               |-               |-               |1               |-               |-               |2               |10              |14                               


Staff numbers not employed in entry clearance work-1994-95                                                                                                                                 

                 |Head of Post    |Minister        |Counsellor      |First Secretary |Second Secretary|Third Secretary |Support         |LE              |Total                            

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Abuja            |1               |-               |-               |1               |3               |1               |2               |33.5            |41.5                             

Accra            |1               |-               |2               |3               |3               |7               |4               |72.25           |92.25                            

Bombay           |1               |-               |-               |2               |1               |2               |1               |60              |67                               

Calcutta         |1               |-               |-               |-               |1               |1               |-               |40              |43                               

Colombo          |1               |-               |1               |1               |3               |6               |5               |69.5            |86.5                             

Dhaka            |1               |-               |2               |5               |4               |16              |5               |70.7            |103.7                            

Islamabad        |1               |-               |4               |8               |7               |10              |12              |127             |169                              

Karachi          |1               |-               |-               |1               |2               |2               |2               |53              |61                               

Lagos            |1               |-               |1               |3               |6               |12              |5               |164             |192                              

Madras           |1               |-               |-               |-               |1               |-               |-               |20.35           |22.35                            

Moscow           |1               |1               |8               |12              |19              |18              |17              |113             |189                              

New Delhi        |1               |1               |6               |10              |10              |3               |13              |286             |330                              

New York         |2               |-               |4               |7               |8               |9               |2               |102.5           |134.5                            

St. Petersburg   |1               |-               |-               |1               |1               |-               |-               |11              |14                               

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what use his Department makes of hand-held and car- based mobile telephones; what were the costs for each financial year of these services since mobile telephones were first introduced to his Department; and how many mobile telephones are currently in use.      [23451]

Mr. Goodlad [holding answer of 9 May 1995]: We supply mobile phones to individuals and departments where this enhances the effectiveness of their work. We cannot provide a breakdown of costs prior to 1993 without incurring disproportionate cost. Costs for the financial years since are:


<1>1993-94 |<1>1994-95           

£          |£                    

---------------------------------

80,415     |116,302.36           

<1> Aid wing figures not         

available.                       

There are 195 hand-portable sets and 11 car phones in use within the diplomatic and aid wings of the FCO.

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations his Department has made to the Department of Trade and Industry concerning the need for legislation to prevent the cloning of mobile telephones.      [23470]

Mr. Goodlad [holding answer of 9 May 1995]: Neither the FCO nor the ODA has made representations to the DTI regarding the need for legislation to prevent the cloning of mobile telephones.

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps his Department has taken to prevent the cloning of telephones being utilised by his Department; and if his Department has discussed this matter with any official agencies.      [23456]

Mr. Goodlad [holding answer 9 may 1995]: The FCO understands there are no commercially available means to prevent cloning. For its part, the Department has initiated thorough checks of itemised billing to ensure unusual call patterns and excessive costs are highlighted and investigated. Additionally, international calls are barred wherever possible.

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many mobile telephones being utilised by his Department have been cloned during the last 12 months.      [23425]

Mr. Goodlad [holding answer 9 May 1995]: This Department has had 10 mobile telephones cloned between November 1994 and April 1995. The ODA has had none.


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Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what costs his Department has incurred during the last 12 months as a result of cloning of mobile telephones being utilised by his Department, with particular reference to the making of unauthorised calls.      [23491]

Mr. Goodlad [holding answer 9 May 1995]: This Department has not incurred any costs for the unauthorised use or reprogramming of cloned telephones. All identified costs--approximately £4,000--have been absorbed by the cellular telephone companies.

Rwanda

Mr. Worthington: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to China in respect of arms sales to Rwanda in breach of the United Nations Security Council resolutions.      [23616]

Mr. Douglas Hogg: None.

The UN sanctions committee has received no evidence of any arms sales by China to Rwanda in breach of the UN arms embargo.

Central Africa

Mr. Worthington: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when the proposed conference on regional problems in central Africa, as proposed by the UK at the United Nations Council, will take place.      [23614]

Mr. Douglas Hogg: We recognise the important role of the countries of the region in the search for solutions to this problem in central Africa. The UN Secretary-General is pursuing proposals for a regional conference on peace and security in the Great Lakes region, but no date has yet been set.

GCHQ Wartime Archive

Mr. Allason: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what plans he has to authorise the transfer of all GCHQ's remaining wartime archive to Bletchley park.      [23414]

Mr. Hurd: None. Bletchley park is not an authorised repository for public records. GCHQ will continue to review its holdings of the wartime archives of the Government code and cypher school, for possible release through the Public Record Office.


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LORD PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL

Historical Documents

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Lord President of the Council what special training is given to persons who have responsibility for assessing the historical significance of documents held by his Department.

Mr. Newton: Training in assessing the historical significance of departmental records is carried out under the guidance of the Keeper of Public Records. It is provided in a number of different ways, including courses on the appraisal of records and through conferences and seminars arranged by the Public Record Office.`

DUCHY OF LANCASTER

AIDS-HIV Research

Mr. Alex Carlile: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will list the research sponsored by his Department through the Medical Research Council, and the amount spent on each project for (a) AIDS-HIV prevention and (b) AIDS-HIV treatment for the last five years for which figures are available and if he will make a statement.      [22668]

Mr. Horam: The overall expenditure figures on AIDS research over the last five years are:


F/Y     |£k           

----------------------

1989-90 |6,200        

1990-91 |13,300       

1991-92 |15,900       

1992-93 |15,300       

1993-94 |16,200       

The nature of the research is such that a split between prevention and treatment is artificial, as many of the research projects cover both aspects. The overall figures do not therefore draw a distinction between the two.

I have today placed copies of lists of the HIV and AIDS research projects supported by the MRC in the Libraries of both Houses. These lists show the titles of the projects, by whom they were carried out and the resources allocated. The list indicates both current projects and projects already completed, indicated by +.

SOCIAL SECURITY

Discretionary Social Fund

Mr. Stephen: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what changes he intends to make to the discretionary social fund, in the light of the changes to the funeral payments regulations announced on 9 May, and if he will make a statement.      [24173]

Mr. Roger Evans: We are introducing minor improvements to the Secretary of State's directions and guidance to clarify the help available for funeral expenses from the discretionary fund. The revised directions clarify


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those circumstances where applicants will have access to loans for funeral expenses.

Details of the amendments and a revised copy of the Secretary of State's directions and guidance to take effect from 5 June will be placed in the Library.

Telephones

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what steps his Department has taken to prevent the cloning of telephones being utilised by his Department; and if his Department has discussed this matter with any official agencies.      [23463]

Mr. Hague [holding answer 9 May 1995]: Cloning is a general problem associated with the use of analogue cellphones. Minimising the risk of cloning would be achieved by moving from analogue to digital cellphones, using the global system for mobile communications, which has wide coverage within the UK and Europe.

The Department at this stage has not taken any positive steps to prevent cloning and before we do, the cost of the conversion from analogue to digital cellphones must be weighed against an assessment of the cloning exposure.

The Department has not at this stage discussed this matter with any official agencies.

TRADE AND INDUSTRY

EU Standards, Testing and Certification

Mr. Amess: To ask the President of the Board of Trade when he intends to publish the results of his Department's study on standards, testing and certification barriers in the non-harmonised areas of the single market.      [24172]

Mr. Ian Taylor: The generic study on standards, testing and certification barriers in non-harmonised areas of the single market is one of a number of studies which arose from my Department's single market compliance unit business plan. Two hundred and fifty businesses and around 100 trade associations were asked whether they had experienced problems in this area and the results of the survey were analysed to discover the nature of the problems and how they would best be tackled.

Our investigations show that many companies are successfully exporting to other member states, but they confirm that problems are faced by some companies and suggest that these problems may be more significant in certain sectors. Specific problems in exporting to six member states were identified and as might be expected from the size of their markets Germany, in particular, and France specified much more often than other member states, although the numbers of problems identified were still low in absolute terms. Analysis of the problems identified supports the twin approach to resolving

conflicts--bilaterally and through direct approaches to the European Commission--as indeed is my Department's usual practice. There is also a need to encourage industry to utilise the benefits of possible agreements under the auspices of the European Organisation for Testing and Certification and to stimulate the work of the European Co-operation for Accreditation of Laboratories and European Accreditation of Certification.

Our investigations have confirmed that there are gaps in mutual recognition which are detracting from the


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benefits of the single market. I have, therefore, written to the European Commission with the results of the study and I will be raising the study with fellow European Ministers in the Internal Market Council.

My Department's single market compliance unit will try to resolve, with firms, specific problems identified by the study and my Department's standards policy unit will help to publicise the ways in which mutual recognition may be achieved.

I have placed in the Library of the House a copy of the report of the study which has been issued.

Telecommunications

Mr. Fabricant: To ask the President of the Board of Trade if he supports the European Commission's proposals to allow cable television companies within the European Community to offer telecommunications services; and if he will support action to allow other telecommunications operators to provide entertainment services.      [24171]

Mr. Ian Taylor: The Government welcome the Commission proposals to allow cable TV companies to offer telecommunication services, which would bring other member states into line with existing UK practice. The Commission proposals, which are currently subject to public consultation, would not affect member states' existing rules on the provision of entertainment services, nor is there any sign that the Commission would be willing to extend its proposals in this way. The Government would strongly oppose any such action. UK Government policy remains as set out in Command Paper 2734, published in November 1994.

Insurance Companies

Mr. French: To ask the President of the Board of Trade what steps he is taking to ensure that insurance company orphan funds accrue to policy holders.      [23265]

Mr. Jonathan Evans: One of the Department's priorities is to ensure that the balance between policyholders' and shareholders' interests is not affected, as I explained in my answer to the hon. Member for Shoreham (Mr. Stephen) on 24 February 1995, Official Report, column 362.

Fireworks

Mr. Nigel Griffiths: To ask the President of the Board of Trade if children aged under 16 years will still be prohibited from purchasing fireworks which do not contain gunpowder after the coming into force of the Firework (Safety) Revocation Regulations 1995.      [23030]

Mr. Jonathan Evans [holding answer 9 May 1995]: The supply of fireworks to children apparently under the age of 16 will continue to be prohibited with the coming into force of the Fireworks (Safety) (Revocation) Regulations 1995, by virtue of section 31 of the Explosives Act 1875 as amended, irrespective of whether fireworks contain gunpowder or other explosive substances.

Inward Investment

Rev. Martin Smyth: To ask the President of the Board of Trade what proposals he has to encourage inward investment to the United Kingdom.      [22252]


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Mr. Eggar: My Department's Invest in Britain Bureau runs a comprehensive programme for promoting the UK overseas, including company visits, advertising, mail shots, seminars and missions. Within the UK, the IBB will be working with Govnerment offices, regional agencies and others to encourage more systematic cultivation of opportunities for securing new investment by existing companies. The resources of the IBB have also been strengthened with the appointment of a new chief executive from the private sector and a regional director for the far east.

PRIME MINISTER

Committee on Standards in Public Life

Mr. John Greenway: To ask the Prime Minister when he expects to receive the first report of the Committee on Standards in Public Life; and if he will make a statement.      [24306]

The Prime Minister: The first report of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, under the chairmanship of Lord Nolan, is being published today as Command Paper 2850. I should like to express my thanks to Lord Nolan and his colleagues for the way in which they have discharged the initial part of the remit which I announced to the House in October. It is welcome that they have reached unanimous recommendations based on open proceedings, and having taken oral and written evidence from a wide cross- section of opinion. The oral evidence they have taken is included in volume II of the report, and written submissions are to be made available at the Public Record Office.

Lord Nolan has arranged to send a copy of his Committee's report to every Member of the House.

I believe it is important to maintain the highest possible standards and confidence in public life. I therefore welcome the work the committee has done.

I accept the broad thrust of the committee's recommendations in so far as they are addressed to the Government. We shall give the report the close study it deserves and then make a detailed response. The recommendations which are addressed to this House are, of course, a matter for the House itself to consider, and my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House will arrange an early opportunity for debate.

Engagements

Mr. Harry Greenway: To ask the Prime Minister if he will list his official engagements for Thursday 11 May.      [22391]

Sir Peter Tapsell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will list his official engagements for Thursday 11 May.      [22393]

The Prime Minister: This morning I presided at a meeting of the Cabinet and had meetings with ministerial colleagues and others. In addition to my duties in this House, I shall be having further meetings later today.

Pay Review Bodies

Mr. Coe: To ask the Prime Minister what is the current membership of the public sector pay review bodies.      [24307]


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The Prime Minister: The current membership, with effect from 1 April 1995, is listed:

Senior Salaries Review Body

Sir Michael Perry CBE (Chairman)

Professor George Bain

Mr. Gordon Hourston

Sir Anthony Wilson

Sir Sydney Lipworth QC

Mrs. Rosemary Day

Miss Patricia Mann

Mrs. Yve Newbold

Mr. Mark Sheldon

Mrs. Beverley Bernard

Armed Forces Pay Review Body

Mr. Gordon Hourston (Chairman)

Mr. Michael Bolton

Mrs. Dorothy Venables

Mr. John Cox CBE

Mr. John Crosby

Air Chief Marshal Sir Roger Palin KCB OBE

Mr. Guy Neely

Sir Gavin Laird CBE (from 1 July 1995)

Review Body on Nursing Staff, Midwives, Health Visitors and Professions Allied to Medicine

Mr. Michael Bett CBE (Chairman)

Miss Annie Mackie OBE

Professor Gillian Raab

Ms Ruth Lea

Mrs. Sheila Gleig

Mrs. Anne Dean

Mr. Lyndon Hadden

Mr. Gareth Griffiths

Following his appointment as First Civil Service Commissioner, Mr. Bett has indicated that he will be stepping down as chairman of the review body once a successor has been appointed.


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