MCR CEO position is on “temporary pause” to await proposed reform changes

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The Chief Executive position for the Ministry of Customs and Revenue has been put on hold following directives from Cabinet relating to proposed reform changes to the Customs and Revenue functions, as stand-alone agencies. 

This was confirmed in a letter by the Chair of the Public Service Commissioner, Lauano Vaosa Epa to former CEO Matafeo Avalisa Viali-Fautuaalii in response to inquiries about the status of the position. 

The letter sent in June was obtained by Radio Polynesia, where Lauano extended her sincere apologies for the delayed response to the former CEO’s communications due largely to the Commission’s and her own conflicting priorities as Chairperson.

Lauano says the outset of the recruitment and selection process for the CEO position that was held by Matafeo coincided with new directives from the Cabinet relating to proposed reform changes within the Ministry of Customs and Revenue.

“This decision projected a potential impact on the functions of the MCR and its CEO position(s) if it were to continue to be finalized. 

“There were also discussions and exchanges with the Deputy Prime Minister to ascertain the status of the position of the CEO MCR; whether to proceed with the recruitment or put a temporary pause on the process until a decision is final on the Ministry’s direction.

“In light of the above, I wish to respectfully inform you that we have received confirmation to temporary put on hold the recruitment process until the Steering Committee’s work is complete on the separation of Customs and Revenue functions and until Cabinet makes a final decision on the same,” said Lauano.

The post was advertised last year November and in February Cabinet ended the contract extension for Matafeo Avalisa Viali-Fautualii while the Public Service Commission carried out its normal hiring process for the lead role. 

10 months later the MCR continues to operate with Assistant Chief Executive officers rotating as CEO’s. 

In May, Matafeo questioned the Public Service Commission on the status of the lead post for the MCR.

In an email to the Chair of the PSC, Lauano Vaosa Epa obtained by Radio Polynesia, Matafeo enquired about the progress of the PSC’s process with the post of the CEO of the MCR that was closed on the 19th of November 2021.