Pay Rise For Article 71 Officers, Mahama Takes GH¢22,800

    /    Dec 29, 2016   /     NewsBreak  /    Comments are closed  /    591 Views

Details are emerging about the report of the Presidential Committee on Emoluments set up to look into the conditions of service of Article 71 officers under the 1992 Constitution, with President John Mahama going home with a handsome GH¢22,809.

The committee, chaired by Prof. Dora Francisca Edu-Buandoh, has actually recommended a pay rise of 42.8% for outgoing President John Mahama as well as 10% for both members of the legislature and the judiciary, as well as other Article 71 holders.

Per the report, which was approved before parliament rose recently, President Mahama is going to receive a monthly non-taxable salary of GH¢22,809 instead of the GH¢15,972 previously approved for outgoing presidents.

The Speaker of Parliament, who is the head of the Legislature, will receive GH¢17,791 instead of the current GH¢16,174 while the Chief Justice, who was enjoying a monthly salary of GH¢15,552, will now receive GH¢17,107.

The Prof. Edua-Buandoh’s report explained that the recommendations were based on “the committee’s guiding principles of fairness, equity, motivation and ability of government to pay.”

The payments have been backdated.

Article 71 office holders last received a pay rise in 2013, which was backdated from 2009 to 2012.

Apart from a 10% across-board increase for this category of officers, some specific public servants under this category are also to enjoy salary increments.

The Presidential Committee on Emoluments explained that between 2009 and 2013, some public servants and political leaders received a 20% increase each year while the president and the vice-president got a 10% rise.

The committee found out that this created some distortions among the top brass in the three arms of government.

For example, it made the Speaker of Parliament, Edward Doe Adjaho, better paid than President Mahama.

The following salaries were also agreed on for cabinet and non-cabinet ministers, with parliament giving its final consent last Friday for the new salaries to take effect from January 7, 2017.

A cabinet minister who is a Member of Parliament (MP) will now receive GH¢16,423 while a cabinet minister, who is not an MP, will collect GH¢16,195.

A minister of state who is an MP will now receive GH¢15,967 while a minister of state who is not an MP will go home with GH¢15,739.

Regional ministers who are MPs will take home GH¢15,967 while those who are not MPs will have GH¢15,511.

Deputy ministers who are MPs will collect GH¢14,876 while those who are not MPs will receive GH¢14,369.

Deputy regional ministers who are MPs will take home GH¢14,369 while those who are not MPs will be given GH¢14,142.

The chairman of the Council of State will now receive GH¢14,826 as his monthly salary while members of the Council will each get GH¢13,685 as their monthly salaries.

The outgoing President John Mahama will be retiring on a salary of GH¢22,809 and would be receiving 40% of that amount as his ‘pension’ salary a month.

Mahama’s Package

According to the report, while on retirement, the president, will also receive other benefits such as state-provided staff not exceeding four, a furnished and up-to-date office and communication equipment. He will also be provided with staff consisting of a cook, steward, gardener and two security persons.

The outgoing president will also have the opportunity to embark on foreign trips with his wife and would be able to use the presidential jet.

Medical and dental services will be provided to him and his wife by the state as well.

He will be given a chauffeur, two vehicles maintained and comprehensively insured by the State and changed every four years for life.

For overseas official travels with his spouse and two security persons, the state will fully pay for all such trips.

The report said the state will sponsor only two foreign travels per year – those not exceeding two weeks in duration – and the president and his wife are also entitled to free healthcare and other benefits, including the payment of utilities at his residence.

Article 71 Holders

The Article 71 holders, which comprise MPs, Superior Court judges, some category of political appointees and public servants, among others, are getting 10% increment across board retrospectively from 2013, according to the report.

Serious Discrepancies

Before the Prof. Edu-Buandoh report, the President was receiving a non-taxable salary of GH¢15,972 while the Speaker of Parliament collected GH¢16,174 making him the highest paid Article 71 office holder.

The report also pointed out that ministers who doubled as MPs as well as Deputy Speakers, the Majority and the Minority Leaders were paid higher than the Vice President.

The vice-president was receiving GH¢14,375 while the MPs who are ministers and Deputy Speakers, the Majority and the Minority Leaders collected GH¢14,515.

The committee recommended that to restore equity, both the president and the vice should receive separate increases in salary from 2009 to 2013.

Apart from Prof. Edu- Buandoh, who is the Dean of the Faculty of Arts at University of Cape Coast, other members of the committee were Professor Kwamena Ahwoi, Dr. William Baah Boateng, Mrs Norkor Duah and Mrs Lydia Bawa.

President John Dramani Mahama, in accordance with Article 71 of the 1992 Constitution, and acting on the advice of the Council of State, appointed the committee to determine the salaries of the officers named above in January 2016.

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