Case against MPs pay hike sent to CJ for direction

June 1, 2013 7:47 am
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Legislators have been clamouring for a pay higher than the Sh532,000 set by the SRC. CFM.
Legislators have been clamouring for a pay higher than the Sh532,000 set by the SRC. CFM.
NAIROBI, Kenya, June 1- A case filed by the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) against the MPs salary demands has been referred to the Chief Justice Willy Mutunga to constitute a bench of three judges to hear it.

Justice David Majanja who was hearing the matter on Friday said the case will be mentioned on June 3 for further directions.

Orders prohibiting the Parliamentary Service Commission from paying MPs more than the 532,000 recommended by the Salaries team will remain in force until the case is heard and determined.

The case will be mentioned on June 3 for further directions.

The LSK, which is being represented by lawyer Nzamba Kitonga, wants the court to declare that MPs cannot be legislate and interpret laws.

“We are asking the Court to declare that Parliament has no power to revoke the gazette notice by the SRC; that Parliament has no power to decide its own salaries and that it is only the SRC that can do that,” Kitonga told Capital FM News on phone on Thursday.

“We also want the Court to declare that any action taken by Parliament in determining salaries as null and void and that the plan to remove SRC Commissioners from office is unconstitutional because they cannot be removed from office for doing their job.”

Legislators have been clamouring for a pay higher than the Sh532,000 set by the SRC.

The salaries team however, maintains that the current economic state of the country cannot sustain a higher wage bill.

The lawmakers on Wednesday, used their afternoon session to lash out at the SRC Chairperson Sarah Serem accusing her of being incompetent.

But when Serem rubbished their name-calling tactics and dared anyone to pay them a higher salary, they adopted new bullish tactics, this time accusing the Executive, the SRC and the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution of threatening them.

“Parliament has gotten a wake up call; we realised we can easily reduce so many things. And why shouldn’t we do it? If you can easily reduce the salaries of MPs by 57 percent, why don’t we do it across the board? Why don’t we reduce the budget of commissions? Why don’t we even reduce taxation?” asked Suba MP John Mbadi.

The legislators are threatening to slash the budgets of independent Commissions by 43 per cent, slash salaries of the President, his Deputy and the Judiciary by 57 per cent.

They have also threatened to amend the law to exempt Kenyans who earn less than Sh50,000 monthly salary from paying taxes.

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