Presidential salaries for life

2016-04-12 12:58
It was interesting to learn through the Zexit debate, that a South African president will maintain their salary for life should they resign, be removed by their party or the party voted out of power. Am assuming this includes us paying for the presidents wives as well, for life.

My first concern is around the concept - simply put, why should they get such a benefit? Who else gets a salary for life, irrespective how long they were in a role or how successful they were? I also believe they benefit from VIP protection for life. I don;t know whether this is common practice globally, but it simply doesn't sit well with me. If this is a pension, then it should be based on how long they were president, or contributed to their pension pot, like everyone else. Furthermore, most presidents write books or consult with private business - for which they earn money over and above their "salary for life".

My second concern is the affordability of this for South Africa : we simply should not be seen to spend money on an ex-President - who enjoyed a fantastic salary in office, made political and business connections they could leverage post- their term in office. I could see the tax payer having to foot a large bill for all the ex-presidents.

I refuse to accept that a president is any better than any other citizen. They are merely holding a very important role in society, and whilst the role is important, the person is not.

Perhaps this elevating of presidents in this country onto pedestals is what leads them to believe they are above the law, that they are better than the citizens over which they govern?

Once the nation has successfully completed the "Zuma must fall" campaign we must start on the "Salary for life must fall" campaign and the "we pay for your wife" campaign.
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