Raila, Kalonzo May Miss Out On Retirement Benefits

Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka are facing the prospect of leaving office without a retirement package, following the rejection early this year of a Bill defining their benefits.

President Kibaki refused to assent to the Retirement Benefits (Deputy President and Designated State Officers) Bill 2012 without giving reasons for his decision.

The Bill also contained the huge retirement packages that MPs had awarded themselves a few days before the 10th Parliament’s term expired.

Others who would have benefited from the Bill were Deputy Prime Ministers Musalia Mudavadi and Uhuru Kenyatta, Speaker Kenneth Marende, Chief Justice Willy Mutunga and Chief of Kenya Defence Forces Jeremiah Karangi.

“Subject to Sections 5(3) and 14, persons entitled to the benefits conferred by this Act shall be persons who at any time after 15th January 2008 retire as Deputy President or Designated State Officers,’ reads the annulled Bill.

Mr Marende who served as Speaker in the 10th Parliament was on a salary of Sh800,000 and  Sh700,000 in allowances while the Prime Minister and the Vice-President are on a monthly salary of Sh1.7 million.

The rejected Bill entitled a retired Speaker of the National Assembly or Senate, a retired Deputy President or Chief Justice to a monthly pension equal to 80 per cent of their last monthly salary while in office.

The retirees would also earn a house allowance equal to 15 per cent of their last monthly salary, a lump sum payment calculated as a sum equal to one-and-a-half-year salary for each term served in office and one saloon vehicle of an engine capacity not exceeding 2000 cc, which was to be replaced once every four years.

The Bill also entitled the retired State officers and their spouses to one four-wheel-drive vehicle of an engine capacity not exceeding 3000 cc replaceable every four years, a fuel allowance equal to 15 per cent of current monthly salary and full medical and hospital cover for local and oversees treatment with a reputableinsurance company.

Diplomatic passport

Under the Bill, a retired Speaker of the National Assembly or the Senate or a retired Deputy Chief Justice was also entitled to one driver, one armed security guard, a diplomatic passport for the retirees and their spouses and access to the VIP lounges at all airports in Kenya.

Mr Kibaki, however, awarded himself a Sh25 million send-off package and the right to a Sh1 million pension every month of his life outside State House.

The Salaries and Remuneration Commission recently reduced salaries for top State officers and capped their monthly allowances to not more than 40 per cent of their gross pay. This means that any Bill that the 11th Parliament may pass will have much lower retirement packages for the State officers.

The proposed remuneration packages have fixed the President’s salary at Sh1.24 million down from Sh2.4 million that the retiring President Kibaki earned. The Deputy President’s gross salary has been capped at a maximum of Sh1.04 million per month.

Under the new structure that took effect from March 1, 2013, Governors will earn Sh640,000 and MPs and Senators Sh535,000 a month.

The Chief of Defence Forces will earn Sh792, 000 while the Speakers of the National Assembly and the Senate will take home a monthly pay of Sh990, 000 each.

Source: Business Daily Africa

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