Salary increase recommendation approved

By Joyetter Feagaimaali’i-Luamanu 21 December 2018, 12:00AM

A recommendation by the Remuneration Tribunal for a salary increase public servants has been approved by the Government.

This was confirmed by the Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr Sailele Malielegaoi during his media conference at his office this week. 

“This is based on the recommendation by the Remuneration Tribunal. However, when it comes to the issue of income, there are several factors to consider such as the salaries for those working in the private sector. 

“We don’t just look at the salaries of government employees but also consider the private sector. If the raise is too much, this will have an impact on the businesses, hence the Government is cautious,” he said. 

The Prime Minister said they have made queries with the Remuneration Tribunal to submit their study to the Government in order for a determination to be made. 

“We can’t just increase salaries based on their recommendation,” he said, while adding that the Government’s pay raises has to be with the private sector. 

“Again a significant increase of salaries will have an impact on the private businesses and these are the issues we have to consider,” he added.

Tuilaepa said in 1981 this issue triggered a protest against the Samoa Government, when doctors had two pay rises while other professions were still waiting. 

The Prime Minister also confirmed that there will an increase of pension benefits as per the National Provident Fund.  

On August 3, 2018 the N.P.F. Chief Executive Officer, Pauli Prince Suhren, wrote to Agafili Shem Leo (C.E.O. of the Ministry of the Prime Minister and Cabinet) highlighting the position of the superfund on the proposed cost of living adjustment for public sector remuneration, and that of the proposed increase in the monthly pension amount — under the senior citizens benefit fund as administered by the N.P.F.

Pauli said the superfund is fully supportive of the proposed increase of circa 30 per cent over the next few years, starting with a 10 per cent rise in January 

 Six months ago, the Cabinet approved salary raises for judges and a decrease of the Prime Minister’s salary as recommended by the Remuneration Tribunal.

The Cabinet approval for Justices in the Supreme Court, Judges of the District Court and the Land and Titles Court was outlined in a F.K. (Fa’aiuga Kapeneta - Cabinet Decision) (18) 17, which also revealed that Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi’s salary was slashed from $187,500 to $182,070 as recommended by a tribunal. 

In April, the Minister of Justice and Courts Administration, Fa’aolesa Katopau Ainu’u proposed a salary raise for the Judges that would have cost close to a million tala. 

However, Cabinet has only approved a small increase for all Judges in the Supreme Court, District Court and the Lands and Titles. 

According to the F.K. (18) 17, the Cabinet approved a $326 increase for the Chief Justice’s salary of $164,944 to $165,270.

A Senior Supreme Court Justice’s salary has also been increased from $131,325 to $136,500. Other Supreme Court Justices have been increased from $126,072 to $131,250. For a Senior District Court Judge, their salary has been raised from $120,819 to $126,000. Other District Court Judges have received an increase from $115,566 to $120,750. The President of the Land and Titles’ salary will increase from $126,072 to $131,250. The six Deputy President of L.T.C. who were making $84,084 will receive a salary boost of $10,416 each, while the 11 Judges who were making $ 63,036 each will receive a boost of $10,464.  

By Joyetter Feagaimaali’i-Luamanu 21 December 2018, 12:00AM
Samoa Observer

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