A government minister has denounced Boris Johnson’s decision to halt a scheme which recruits the brightest young people into public service.
The Fast Stream graduate program is on hold as part of plans to drastically reduce the number of civil servants by 91,000.
The scheme is frozen for at least 12 months from next year in a bid to bring the number of civil servants back to the same level as before Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic.
But Energy Minister Greg Hands made his opposition to the proposals clear on Twitter.
He said: “It makes perfect sense to monitor the size of government and ask why and where it has grown since 2016. It makes no sense to say, like that, that for a year the best and the shiny are not welcome. serve their country.
His comments come just weeks after former Tory leader William Hague also condemned the government’s plan.
“What the public service really needs is fewer people overall, with some very bright new people, including those with the scientific and technical expertise it desperately lacks,” Hague wrote in The temperature.
“It needs more diversity of thought and recruits who think outside the box, with less bureaucracy and more breakthroughs like those of the vaccine task force.
“It needs more fast streamers if it is to be reinvented, but instead the government has opted for entrenchment.”
But a government minister said world of public service“Our goal is to have a public service that has the skills and capabilities to continue delivering exceptional public services, which is exactly why we have changed recruitment rules to attract the best talent and are investing in development professionalism of our staff.
“It is crucial that all aspects of taxpayer spending are efficient and value for money. It was right to develop the civil service to deliver Brexit and deal with the pandemic, but now we need to bring it back to 2016 staffing levels and have asked all departments to define how this could be achieved.