Top public officials facing salary freeze after recommendation

2016-11-14 17:58
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Cape Town - Cosatu has welcomed the recommendation of the Independent Commission on the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers that there be a salary freeze for high-ranking public officials.

The commission published its annual recommendations on Friday, and said the freeze was recommended because of the "dire state" of the economy, as expressed by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan in his mid-term budget speech last month.

"This decision is long overdue and the federation commends the commission for acknowledging that the dire economic situation has affected the workers and the people of South Africa badly," Cosatu spokesperson Sizwe Pamla said on Monday.

"The huge salaries and benefits that are paid to political office bearers and senior bureaucrats are the source of the existing inequalities and unacceptable income disparities that currently exist in the public service."

Pamla said he hopes government will reduce the "exorbitant packages" paid to national and provincial Cabinet members, MPs, judges and senior managers of state-owned enterprises.

He also called on government to reduce the size of national and provincial Cabinets, and the number of MPs and MPLs.

Nurses, teachers and police officers

Pamla also said it was time the government showed solidarity with "lowly" public servants, saying the call should not extend to them.

"We also want to caution government not to use this as a prelude to freeze or moderate the salaries of lowly public servants, when the negotiations open in 2018.

"The lowly public servants are the ones who are at the coalface of service delivery.

"It is totally unacceptable that police officers, nurses and teachers will have to work for nine years before earning an annual salary of a director general."

The commission was established in 1997 after the adoption of the Constitution of South Africa.

It is constitutionally mandated to make recommendations concerning the salaries, allowances and benefits of defined office-bearers.

Read more on:    cosatu  |  salaries

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