COSTA RICA NEWS — The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes (MOPT) announced an internal restructuring that includes the closing of the National Roads Council (Consejo Nacional de Vialidad – CONAVI) and the National Concessions Council (Consejo Nacional de Concesiones – CNC), “of poor performance in the development of public works.”
MOPT (Transport and Public Works) minister, Carlos Segnini, explained that the closure of the CONAVI and CNC paves the way for the creation of the National Infrastructure Institute (Instituto Nacional de Infraestructura – INI), and the firing of the almost 500 current employees. The minister added that rehiring will be only of those employees suitable for the new jobs.
The CONAVI and CNC employee 500 people.
Thursday morning, President Luis Guillermo Solís, visited the CONAVI offices, reassuring the officials that there will be “no persecution” with the closure.
Segnini said that the recruitment of new staff will probably occur outside the Civil Service system, since it often lends itself as a mechanism of “tenure and pandering” for officials.
“The councils are inoperative for they were created in law. We would achieve little just changing the name, and maintaining the current structure,” said Segnini.
The CONAVI was created in 1998 to deal with maintenance of the national road network, as an arm of the MOPT. Its closure will be final once the Legislative Assembly approves the bill for the creation of the INI, which means we can see the CONAVI and CNC operating for at least another year or more.
In recent years, the CONAVI has been accused of a number of irregularities, including the construction of the border road 1856, known as La Trocha.
The minister made it clear that fired employees will have their labour rights respected and be paid their severance.