Axed Civil Service jobs in Northern Ireland could save £159m a year: Minister
The equivalent of more than 4,000 Northern Ireland Civil Service jobs have disappeared over the past year - at a cost of £171m, it has been revealed.
Finance Minister Mairtin O Muilleior said the reduction in the number of roles would slash approximately £43.7m from the payroll bill. The Sinn Fein MLA added that a more accurate picture would not emerge until at least September, when all those taking part in the exit scheme will have gone.
Those who have left so far amount to 4,300 full-time staff, with potential eventual annual savings of £159m, Mr O Muilleior revealed in a written Assembly answer to the DUP's Paul Frew.
But MLAs also heard of one government department that had lost more than two dozen "critical" members of staff.
They were told the new Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DEARA) may not be able to replace the lost workers.
One section of the former Department of Environment lost more than 100 workers under the extensive voluntary exit scheme launched by the Executive last year.