Opposition Spokesman on Finance Julian Robinson said the Opposition was unaware about the details on how the recent salary increase for political directorates was calculated and is urging the Government to revise and delay the increase.
The call comes after Robinson stood in Parliament on Tuesday (May 16) and said that the Opposition had “no objection” with the proposed increase. The salary increases were shared by Finance Minister Nigel Clarke during Parliament, to which Robinson responded that the Opposition took no issue with the increase.
Since the announcement, there has been public outcry for the minister’s compensation to be reviewed and reduced.
Speaking at a press briefing yesterday (May 19), Robinson pointed out that the Opposition was unaware of the details of how the increase was calculated.
“While we did not know the exact nature of the increase, it was anticipated that there would be a significant increase…No details were shared with us prior to going to Parliament on Tuesday,” said Robinson.
He said the Opposition was made aware of the range of the proposed increase, but did not know where each minister would be placed.
“In my response to the minister I said we took no issue with what was presented. That was a response in real time, based on what was being presented at the time. We had no prior details of what we were going to receive. On reflecting on the nature of the increases, we recognise that the increases were significantly larger than anticipated,” he sought to clarify.
He stressed that he will continue to call for the issues regarding payments to public sector workers, to be resolved.
He said the Oppositions wants there to be a delay in the implementation of the increase to Parliamentarians until these outstanding issues related to other public servants are resolved. The second thing we are calling for is a reconsideration of the alignment of a minister to be one dollar above the highest paid in the permanent secretaries band,” said Robinson.