Thank you God-Salaries team wants to chop MPs’ wages

Members of Parliament are among top public servants facing a major salary cut if the team set up to determine the pay for government workers has its way.

The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SCR) is reviewing salaries of public officers in a move that may rattle many of those already enjoying huge perks.

Those to be affected include MPs, permanent secretaries and members of constitutional commissions.

The new salary scale, which will lead to a big drop in the government wage bill, will be unveiled before December after the SRC completes a job evaluation exercise.

The pay cuts will be effected to ensure equity in the salaries and allowances of government workers, SRC vice-chairman Daniel Ogutu and commissioner Isaiah Kubai said on Wednesday.

“We will be coming up with a new salary structure for State officers based on a scientifically accepted method. This will help in proper planning and budgeting,” Mr Ogutu said.

The review, Mr Kubai added, will help to harmonise pay to ensure fairness in compensation of government workers.

“Salaries at the top will decrease so that we can pay those at the bottom who are currently not very well compensated,” he said.

Kenyan MPs, who have been determining their own pay before the SRC was set up, are among the best paid in the world.

Their latest attempt to award themselves a huge Sh2 billion send-off package, where each would have pocketed Sh9 million, flopped after President Kibaki rejected it following widespread public outcry. (READ: Kibaki rejects MPs’ Sh2bn send-off pay)

President Kibaki warned that the country could not afford the colossal perks the MPs had awarded themselves by way of a severance package.

MPs monthly earning — both basic salary and allowances — stand at Sh850,000 while some PSs and members of constitutional commissions draw over Sh1 million in salaries and allowances.

“All state officers will be interviewed including the President so as to develop acceptable, rationalised, harmonised, defensible and equitable grading structure,” said the SRC vice-chairman.

PriceWaterhouseCoopers has been contracted to carry out the evaluation of jobs created by the Constitution and categorised as State jobs.

The evaluation is aimed at harmonising salaries paid to State and public officers in about 90 different jobs in the public service.

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