Within six months of being appointed to serve as one of two Permanent Secretaries in the Office of the new Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell, former acting Deputy Comptroller of Customs Carvel Lett has been elevated to the post of acting Cabinet Secretary, the highest position in the Public Service.
Lett has taken over from former High Commissioner to London, Ruth Rouse who has proceeded on pre-retirement leave after more than 35 years of service as a public officer.
Lett is from the St David constituency which is held in Parliament by Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell.
Her rise to the top came against the backdrop of an uncertain period at Customs.
One senior public officer was asked to comment on whether Lett is best suited and equipped for the assignment.
She said that the new acting Cabinet Secretary will have to prove herself in short order as Prime Minister Dickon Mitchell is not one who will accept “sloppy work.”
In addition, she said that as a Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister, Lett would have gotten some exposure to the Office of the Cabinet as the two unit operate almost in the same space on the Top Floor of the Ministerial Complex in the Botanical Gardens.
Another senior public officer questioned the ability of Lett to handle the top job in the public service.
She told THE NEW TODAY: “She (Lett) does not have the experience. All she knows about is Customs. What is her experience?”
About five months ago, concerns were also raised about possible conflict of interest between Lett’s role as an Executive member of the Public Workers Union (PWU) and a Permanent Secretary in the office.
She rejected these concerns on the grounds that there is no rule in the PWU constitution that prevents her from handling the position while being a top member of the public service.