The Treasury and National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union (Nehawu) have both come out in opposition to the Foreign Service Bill, saying it is inconsistent with the Public Finance Management Act. The bill proposes removing employees of the Department of International Relations and Co-operation (Dirco) out of the public servants’ framework and replacing the current, fragmented foreign service with a single system — a consolidated administrative and management framework under Dirco, which will be responsible for all members of foreign missions. The bill will also give the Dirco minister control over foreign assets and the power to acquire, rent or dispose of them. It also provides for the establishment of a diplomatic academy. Ailwei Mulaudzi, Treasury director of fiscal and inter-governmental legislation, told MPs at the portfolio committee on international relations and co-operation on Wednesday that members of the foreign service were subject to the Public Service Act or...

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