Poland trims ministry jobs amid spending questions
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, right, greets Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki prior to a meeting at EU headquarters in Brussels on Thursday, March 8, 2018. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)
March 12, 2018 - 8:56 AM
WARSAW, Poland - Poland's government dismissed 17 deputy ministers in a move designed to improve the Cabinet's work and make it "less political," the prime minister said Monday.
Mateusz Morawiecki made the announcement just as the opposition has raised questions about the level of spending at the Defence Ministry and the high bonuses paid last year to members of the previous government team.
Critics say the level of spending conflicts with the ruling conservative party's message of moderation.
Morawiecki, a former banker, made no reference to the spending, but argued the dismissals should help consolidate work and improve co-operation. He said more dismissals would follow in the coming weeks.
Seventeen out of more than 120 deputy ministers have been removed from their positions, mainly from the health and economy-related ministries.
Opposition lawmakers said the dismissals didn't mean much because most officials would continue their tasks with lower-ranking titles.
Morawiecki was appointed as prime minister in December and his Cabinet members were appointed in January in a move intended to improve Poland's strained dialogue with the European Union and its general international standing.
News from © The Associated Press, 2018