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Economy

Cabinet wants further pay cut for state officers

President Kibaki chairs a past Cabinet meeting. The Cabinet has welcomed the move to set new pay structures for State officers but wants more salary cuts February 7, 2013. FILE
President Kibaki chairs a past Cabinet meeting. The Cabinet has welcomed the move to set new pay structures for State officers but wants more salary cuts February 7, 2013. FILE 

The Cabinet has welcomed the move to set new pay structures for State officers but wants more salary cuts.

During a meeting chaired by President Kibaki at State House, Nairobi Thursday, the Cabinet mandated a sub-committee to study the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) report which proposes huge pay cuts for officers across the public service.

The meeting agreed on the need to reduce the public wage bill further to alleviate the taxpayers' burden.

"Cabinet expressed concern that the measures announced by SRC are not adequate and more steps should be taken to further reduce the wage bill," said the Cabinet brief.  

The committee was tasked with developing "comprehensive measures to further control the escalation of the public wage bill".

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The Cabinet decision comes days after the SRC justified the proposed new salary structure for state officers saying the current public wage bill was unsustainable.

The commission said the implementation of the new Constitution has occasioned an additional budget given the creation of additional offices and that this has worsened the already huge wage bill.

Commission’s chairperson Sarah Serem said the new salary structure must be affordable since officers are paid from public funds.

She said the commission is working on a medium term plan to bring the wage bill to a level that can be sustained.

It has been estimated that the government will spend some Sh457.5 billion on public sector wage bill in the current financial year, about 30.2 per cent of the total national budget.

Finance Minister Njeru Githae is on record as having cautioned against the huge wage bill warning that it could have serious economic implications for the country.

The Cabinet also discussed and approved the Public Private Partnership project by Kenyatta University to provide affordable student accommodation during Thursday’s sitting.

It also approved the securing of land for purpose of the Special Economic Zones, the signing of a host Country Agreement between Kenya and the African Union Commission for hosting of Africa Union institutions in Kenya and the National Climate Change Action Plan (2013-2017).

On the Constituency Development Fund (CDF), Cabinet was informed that Treasury has released CDF money to all constituencies and asked the Minister of State for Planning, National Development and Vision 2030 to take "necessary action".

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