NAIROBI, Kenya, May 17 -The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) will meet Members of Parliament in Naivasha on Monday and Tuesday to “discuss and thrash,” out the proposed public sector wage bill policy, SRC announced on Sunday.
The commission has drafted a policy following country-wide public hearings and meetings with stakeholders.
According to the commission’s communications officer, Ali Chege, SRC is also in the process of drafting legislation in consultation with Kenya Law Reform Commission and the office of the Attorney General to guide the implementation of the policy.
It would however require Parliament’s endorsement, hence the move to involve the legislators from the ground up.
The policy is intended to rein in the runaway public wage bill that currently stands at 12 percent of the Gross Domestic Product; the internationally accepted standard being seven percent.
President Uhuru Kenyatta has supported the formulation of the policy and during the Labour Day celebration said pay should reflect productivity.
A public wage policy, he has also argued, would free up more funds for development as well as attract and retain top talent in the public sector.
And to lead from the front, President Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto took a 20 percent pay cut with Cabinet Secretaries and Principal Secretaries agreeing to a 10 percent reduction in their pay.
President Kenyatta also demanded that parastatal chiefs take a 20 percent pay cut or, “look for employment where they can pay you that amount of money.”
In order to base public sector pay on productivity, the SRC contracted PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to carry out job evaluations in the public sector.
Evaluations that have encountered some resistance from public school teachers and health workers who fault the SRC directive barring the entering into of Collective Bargaining Agreements pending the conclusion of the evaluation exercise.