In that letter, the SEII conveys four reasons for dismissing the head of the Department: 1. does not respect and does not submit to the top hierarchy of the Institution; 2. does not show the willingness to carry out her obligations as head of department in the Institution; 3. activities within the communication media department do not work well; 4. health problems affect her performance in carrying out her duties.
Based on these reasons, SEII decided to dismiss Luisa da Silva from her position as the Head of the Communication and Media department starting from 30 April 2019.
After six days (6), on April 2, 2019, without going through a formal process, KFP issued a decision number 3157/2019 / CFP to approve requests from SEII.
Not accepting this decision, on April 10, 2019, Luisa sent an appeal letter to KFP to ask for an explanation of the reason for the decision, because while carrying out the obligations and duties at the SEII she felt as if she never showed an attitude of disrespect towards her superiors,
Luisa regretted the decision of KFP as she considered the KFP to just “turn a blind eye" when making a decision.
"KFP itself has not opened an investigation against me. It should be the civil servant
commission, Mr. Faustinho Presidente KFP has sent a letter to me, writing various things in this letter, and has had to open an investigation firstly to me before issuing this his final letter, now I don't know anything, "said Luisa.
This case began when a delegation from SEII lead by Secretary of State Maria José da Fonseca Monteiro de Jesus participated in the opening of a high-level meeting in New York, United States, in the 63rd session organized by the Commission on the status of women (CSW), on the 11th until the 22nd of March, 2019.
The SEII Delegation to New York consisted of four people (4). H.E. Maria Fonseca, General Director of SEII, one Advisor and H.E. Maria Fonseca’s nephew at SEII who is designated in the legislation section. H.E's nephew was given the task of writing and taking photos of the SEII delegation activities while in New York.
The problem began to escalate when there was an error in posting photos on the news which the H.E nephews sent ( to us) and the media department went on to publish on SEII's facebook page
“When the SEII media office was in contact with me, I asked “is this news correct or not?” "But the staff replied” “sister, Beny is the one who has been sent to us, he is the nephew of Her Excellency. Well, when I was told the information was correct, I then published the information on Facebook, Luisa tells.
After returning from New York. H.E. Maria Fonseca immediately held an extraordinary meeting with the media department. Luisa then became a very guilty person. H.E. Maria declared Luisa to be an unsuccessful and inappropriate person to be in the department of communication and media.
Luisa, who had been unable to bear the words and accusations from H.E Maria, asked permission from her superiors to be able to "defend herself". Luisa said with tears. After revealing her thoughts, Furthermore, Luisa also did not forget to apologize if there were words that she spoke that did not sit well with H.E Maria.
"It's ok. No problem, "said H.E. Maria when Luisa apologized.
However, the 'cold war' has started from here, H.E. Maria took an answer from Luisa about the problem and the reasoning for her to submit a complaint / report to the KFP to “kick” Luisa out from her position.
To find out more about this problem, the Tempotimor journalist (JTT) conducted an exclusive interview with the former head of the Communication and Media department, Luisa da Silva (LU), Saturday (05/18).
JTT: sister, before you explain the problem that you are facing, can you tell me about how many years you have worked in the State secretary that respectfully focuses on women?
LU: 9 to 10 years, starting from SEPI. I worked as an intern for one and a half years, in 2008, then was appointed as a permanent employee in 2010.
JTT: so that means you have worked with 4 state secretaries, what do you think about the treatment of civil servants from the former Secretary of State?
LU: I want to say that the treatment is not the same. First, the leadership of Idelta, when she sees / knows our mistakes, looks at something we do wrong, she herself makes corrections so we can easily correct it. But there was a consultant named Carlito who helped us, so that all four of us felt we could carry out our jobs.
Secondly, Mrs. Veneranda, she was very kind, this person treated her employees very well. If she saw something incorrect, she always called us to speak, especially on “Language equality”. She always made the corrections, then gave it to us and we would fix it.
After, Ms. Laura entered the department, she served for just nine months (9), but we did good work together. Cooperation is good, if there is an activity I always call the media to hold a Press Conference, and include the media in all activities.
Now with Maria we are not saying that she is not good, only the treatment to her people are not the same, there is no “humanity”, I really don’t know. It’s because the current H.E who has the character of a big person (Official) must therefore place herself at the pinnacle of the hierarchy. She "considers" people who work here for 10 years do nothing, this is always said when we have a meeting.
JTT: sister, now we want to ask you more about your problem, can you explain?
LU: First, the delegation went to America, her nephew was the one feeding information back to Dili, to this office. At the SEII office the media were also present, one of our friends António Fátima was in charge of the media, but the H.E's nephew was not the media, her nephew was a legislator of law. Now, H.E. only brought her nephew along with an assessor Flora and the Director General. Then sent this news to us at the office, to Mr. António Fátima, the Cabinet of the Media.
Then, as I am the admin for our Facebook website, which belongs to the Government and the SEII, Antonio contacted me and said "this is the headline!, this is a picture". I still ask him "Atoy, was this news correct or not?" he answered, “my sister, Bery sent it. Bery is her nephew who was with H.E. in New York"
It's ready, when the Cabinet says it's correct, I loaded the news, it's loaded. Once loaded, it turns out that photos and news may not appropriated, unless we are some kind of technical people, who have knowledge about the media. If we had gone we would’ve known that the photo was to be in conjunction with the story, this photo attached with the story, but we did not go, it was given to us, we only received it.
Before being published, I consulted the media officer. The next day, Atoy came and said that the picture was wrong, so I said, "you know, you said everything was correct so I loaded the news". He said "no sister, we must replace the picture", so both of us had replaced the picture on the news sites.
Perhaps H.E.was angry during her time in America, I also didn't know. But when Her Excellency arrived in Bali, she made a telephone call here, and called to the Cabinet and explained ( told) how she was angry with them, but I said to them "it's not my fault because I obeyed everything that the Cabinet said,'' Now, when Her Excellency arrived here, immediately holding a meeting, an extraordinary meeting, this meeting was comprised of the media, the other department weren’t called, but they should’ve been as this situation affects the whole structure of the department”
She called me, so I went there with one of my staff. Actually there were three (3) of us working for the media, but because one of our staff were absent, only two of us met with H.E alongside our interim director Mrs Belina.
When we entered the meeting, H.E immediately said "Ms. Luisa, why is the news like this?", I just looked at Antonio. Then we started the meeting and H.E accused me from start to finish regarding travelling to America, until (Lian) “Igualdade” (bulletin of SEII) and she said “all of this is because you were not successful or appropriate”. Saying "this is all your fault”
I just listened quietly, I felt it was too much, because I knew that (lian) Igualdade is inclusive, when we were asked, we always answered, now , there was an error we needed to repair again, as it was our responsibility we submitted to the table of Her Excellency. So I asked for permission and time to explain.
I said "H.E, sorry, may I be given a minute to speak or not? I want to talk" I said "H.E, I’ve recognised all the times we were always blamed, but usually we work from the ( Lian) Igualidade, we put these things forward, we brought it here and gave it to the Cabinet, then the Cabinet put it onto H.E’s table, we came to follow up, has anything progressed? Has it been corrected or not? Mr. Tito gave us a response that still this issue sits at H.E’s desk, still at the table of H.E, if we accept this as a return we will always be blamed, if it just sits at HE's desk. I, as a head of the department, might not enter H.E's office to take it back, Perhaps H.E was often angry against the staff, so they are ( H.E’s Cabinet staffs)very afraid of meet you, they did not take the bulletin and give it to us. Now we are guilty. “That’s all I can say”
JTT: However, in the SEII letter to the KFP it said you did not show respect for your leadership?
LU: because of the statement from my answer? Maybe because of this. But before I speak, I always ask for permission, then when I'm done I always apologize. I said "H.E maybe they are hard words and I apologize for them". She herself told me "It's ok. No problem. So I think it's finished. I thought that this problem really wasn't there, but after a long time, I received a letter from the KFP, which made me very surprised.
JTT: sister, we have heard that you have submitted an appeal to the civil servant commission?
LU: Yes, my appeal has been sent to the Civil servant commission and PDHJ. I submitted this appeal on April 10. They told me to always follow up, but I have had some work so I have not checked, maybe on Tuesday (05/28) I will return there again, because the Civil Servant Commissioner Mr. Antonio also called in to Mr. Tito whilst I was with him and said "H.E. called me to solve this problem but I was not called until today", I said that "A big person (leader) cannot call you to talk about a problem like this. It doesn’t work like that. "
JTT: With the problems you face now, do you feel safe to work there or not?
LU: For me it's safe because I worked there for a long time, but I understand that with the letter that has been sent, it’s given me a sign, the path is now closed me to work in relation to training activities, I can't do this anymore.
JTT: what is your thought, if the KFP does not approve of the appeal you submitted, what will you do?
LU: I must always follow it, KFP itself must see first, because KFP itself has not opened an investigation against me. Supposedly, the civil servant commission, Mr. Faustino, the President of KFP, sent a letter like this to me and contains various things, there must be a prior investigation of my background first and then a submission of a letter must be made, I didn’t know anything”
I did not know anything because at the time everything was fine, I thought this was fine, then there was a letter from KFP to the DG office, DG handed me a copy of the letter, then I read this new letter very much “surprised ", in this letter it mentions many things inside.
At first it's mentioning the principle of discipline so I was shocked. I also went to KFP, I went to Mr. Faustino's office, then the secretary printed out a complaint letter from the SEII to me, I read this letter, it seems this is a very "deadly" one.
Now we have to take the test in June or July, which is called a “Level increase/level up test”. I have secured my level 4 position for 10 years, now I’m waiting for the level to increase to level 5. For 10 years level 4 is not said to be bad, but I want to improve my level.
So this SEII letter to the KFP has closed the road to me, it’s certain that I will not appeal, I am considered a "blacklist". for my incremental level, (or my level increase), I can't do anything anymore, I can't because in this letter it says that I am not disciplined (undisciplined), I am someone who is not loyal to the leadership, says that I am sick, seriously ill, cannot work anymore.
All of this is an articulated “medical certificate” to stop me completely.
JTT: If possible, we would like to know in your appeal what you are asking for? your position back as head of department or simply to take on these accusations?
LU: For me the issue of my dismissal is not a problem because this is her right, even though it is not fair but it's okay. I worked for this, I did not fight for the position, I struggled to associate with and comprehend the three things that are written in the letter.
First, (SEII said) I don't respect my leader, while during my evaluations every year I never get insufficient scores. I get Very Good (Muito Bom) and Good ( Bom).
Secondly (SEII said) I am not loyal or do not properly carry out my tasks, the media does not function. Please ask the media colleagues who through the duration of H.E activities in this office, as to what they endured, they may ask all the media. I always sent letters to the media so that they could come and cover all of her activities, any program and any celebration day / holiday. I always bring the media, I am always calling the media crew to cover. We are working on (lian) Igualidade, all of which we are working on, but she said all of this wasn’t working. I felt like it was a “blow” not just for me but for all the staff involved.
Thirdly (SEII said) my medical condition was not suitable, at that time I was indeed sick, SEII also questioned that I had just entered and had taken leave again, I took leave because I informed the office that I had taken permission first, I did not mention it. Because the civil service commission knows that a civil servant has the right to take annual leave for 20 days. Now, at one time my two children went on to study abroad so I took some annual leave to take care of all their needs. I went back to work and they questioned this.
The Civil servant commission alone does not say that “you are a new civil servant who is not allowed to take leave in January or February”, this is non-existent, the Civil servant Commission has no regulations / laws that say about this. As a civil servant we have the right to this time away from work. SEII also questioned all of this.
So I just want to say that: My struggle for appeal to the KFP is not to fight for position. But I struggled for the three things I mentioned earlier to be solved. Because I feel as if SEII wants to close off my career completely.
JTT: As long as you meet with the KFP Commissioner, the discipline affairs section, Mr. Antonio Freitas what do you think he will more or less say?
LU: Mr. Antônio himself told me that: "Ms. Lucia, your appeal I have read it, I already know everything, I will take care of it and talk with the KFP President to solve this." Then Mr. Antonio told me that he is ready to solve this problem of mine and that it will be counted, so I believe his words.
JTT: Thank you for your time.