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General News
MPs Want Gh¢7,000 Month Pay? 1/22/2011
Credible Information gathered by Citi News indicates Members of Parliament are set to recommend that their salaries be pegged at Gh¢7,000 per month.

Our sources within Parliament say members of a committee set up by the House to review the salaries and conditions of service of the nation’s law makers, for which the services of a consultant has been engaged, initially considered a salary band of between Gh¢ 5,000 and Gh¢8,000, but settled on the compromise figure of Gh¢7,000.

The MPs currently receive a salary of about Gh¢2,500 a month. They last had a pay rise in October 2010, when their salaries were increased by 17%.

The proposed increase is premised on a number of factors, including what they describe as the difficult economic conditions. As well, the lawmakers say they are grossly underpaid, given that they have oversight responsibility for chief executives of state and public owned companies who usually earn between Gh¢6,000 and Gh¢12,000 per month.

Further, compared to their colleagues in other countries such as Kenya and the United States, the MPs argue they are paid peanuts for serving Ghanaians in the legislature.

The outcome of the review will be put before the President’s Committee on Emoluments, which has been tasked to recommend new salary levels for Article 71 office holders, for consideration.

However, the committee members could not agree on the proposal that MPs’ salaries should be graduated to reflect the length of stay in the House. Leadership of Parliament was yet to work out the modalities and agree on the graduations, our sources say.

The Committee is chaired by former Deputy Majority Leader and now Information Minister John Tia Akologo. It was supposed to have submitted its report to the President’s Committee on Emoluments in December 2010.

Speaking to Citi News earlier in the week, Hon John Tia said the proposal to graduate the salaries of MPs to reflect the length of service and any other additional duties they play in the House was the right thing to do.

“In the past, it has just been a blanket thing that first year MPs and existing MPs for several terms take the same salary, but we want to make proposals to depart from that. We also want to make proposals to recognise positions like the leadership for instance who perform extra duties apart from their duties as MPs for their constituencies. In any profession, when you enter at
a certain point, you don’t take the same salary with those who have been there already. So this is why we needed the services of a Consultant” he explained.

Hon. John Tia debunked the notion that the move will create discrimination amongst MPs when implement.

"There will be base levels for all MPs. But if you are performing extra duties as a Majority Leader, Deputy Majority Leader, as Chief Whip or Chairman of a Committee, that is an extra responsibility and this must be recognised" he said.

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