The House of Commons select committee on Public Administration is
to hold an inquiry into the Government Information and Communication
Service (GICS) later this month.
The inquiry will review the GICS operation in the wake of changes to the
service implemented by the Government in December and the departures of
eight departmental heads of information since the election.
Labour MP Rhodri Morgan, the select committee’s chairman, has confirmed
he will call Alastair Campbell, the Prime Minister’s press secretary, to
appear before the committee. He will also call Mike Granatt, head of the
GICS and Robin Mountfield, the permanent secretary to the Office of
Public Service - part of the Cabinet Office which is responsible for
central Government effectiveness and efficiency.
All three co-authored the Mountfield report, published last December,
which suggested a greater centralisation of communications power at 10
Morgan said: ’We will conduct a general review of how the GICS is
bedding down after the turbulence of the last year, the roles of career
GICS professionals, people seconded to the GICS who go back to the civil
service after a few months, and special advisers; and how the balance
between Government and the GICS is settling down’.