, NAIROBI Kenya, Dec 1 – Members of County Assemblies are set to resume their sittings on December 10 although they insist that they are still unhappy with the pay offer from the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC).
Chairman of the County Governing Forum Abdi Nuh (Tana River Speaker) said they agreed to resume work but maintain their push for better pay.
He said they will continue pushing for more until the County Assemblies members get a gross salary of Sh279, 000.
“Members are dissatisfied with what that has been offered,” he stated.
He added that the, “Salary as has been offered now has no basis…they have not pegged on any scientific evaluation. We still hold to the fact that what we have requested is reasonable.”
Nuh warned that they “will take drastic measures for what has been offered once we consult members.”
After a revision to the Members of County Assemblies salaries, the Commission agreed to give a basic pay of Sh123,750 per month up from the gazetted Sh79,200.
In the new structure, they will also get a sitting allowance of Sh124, 800, a mileage allowance pegged at Sh39,528 and airtime worth Sh5,000 per month bringing their monthly take home to Sh293,078.
The MCAs are also set to get mortgage and car loan facilities valued at Sh3 million and Sh2 million respectively once in their five year term.
Nuh dismissed claims that an increment of their salary would lead to a high wage bill saying it should apply to the members of the salaries commission who equally earn high salaries and allowances.
“The chair of SRC earns 50,000 sitting allowance…is this wage bill applicable just to us?” he posed.
He accused the Sarah Serem led commission of using the issue of wage bill to deny them their right to better salary.
“This should apply to all people who work for the government. If SRC are so concerned about the issue of wage bill, let the commissioners of SRC be paid Sh3,900 sitting allowance as we are paid. Let them not use the issue of wage bill selectively,” he stressed.
The Transitional Authority has since appealed to Members of the County Assemblies (MCAs) to be considerate and accept the 50 percent pay increase given to them by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC).
The authority Chairman Kinuthia Wamwangi on Friday told Capital FM News that SRC terms were reasonable and stated that anything more would be stretching the government’s budget.
“The MCAs should be considerate. No one ever gets enough and even me if you ask me I am not getting enough but a time comes when you must say ‘well, at least I am better off than before’ and I think a time has come when the MCAs must say they are better off than before,” he said.
The salary Commission has explained that the salary review comes after the Commission conducted a job reevaluation exercise which found them deserving of a pay hike.
However, the increase will not be immediate and will have to wait until the next financial year starting July 2014 because it had not been factored in the current budget.
“MCAs whose areas of representation are beyond the 90-kilometer return journey shall claim for reimbursement for the extra kilometer once in a week based on applicable AA rates,” she had said.
According to SRC, the facilitative allowances have changed by 39.7 percent from the previous budget of Sh3.6 billion per annum to Sh5.04 billion per annum.
“Overall change is 45.6 percent which is Sh2.64 billion per annum. On average, this translates to approximately Sh55 million per County per annum and Sh4.6 million per month per county,” the Commission argues.