NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 21 – Budalangi Member of Parliament Ababu Namwamba has filed a Motion seeking to have the three arms of government take a 50 percent pay cut on their basic salaries so as to reduce the public wage bill.
The Motion which he says will balance the disparities in the pay structure also proposes that all sitting allowances paid to the public officers be abolished while all their mileage claims and travelling allowances are reviewed downwards by the Salaries and Remuneration Commission.
“There is no logic of whatever shade for only 1.5 percent of the population who constitute the public workforce to consume 52 percent of revenue generated by all the 40 million Kenyans collectively—this lopsided economic scenario seriously constrains the resources available for development financing and delivery of essential services to all Kenyans,” states the Motion.
The Motion which he expects to be prioritised when the House resumes following a month long recess also seeks to push the two houses to initiate a bi-partisan process of reducing the number of legislators at the two levels of government while also reducing the number of commissioners within the constitutional commissions.
“The National Assembly and the Senate in consultation with National and County Governments shall initiate a joint process of reviewing and harmonising public service establishment in all counties to eliminate the current duplication of personnel between the two levels of government,” he said.
Namwamba who doubles up as the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Secretary General also proposes the formation of a Public Wage Review Committee comprising three members of the National Assembly, two members of the Senate, one Treasury official and a representative from the Salaries and Remuneration Commission to restructure, harmonize and balance the public wage structure adding that unlike other special committees, the members will not be entitled to any form of remuneration.
He said the now common teachers strike amplified the need to address the disparities between the different classes of public servants to ensure everyone earned a decent pay.
He urged MPs to set aside their political affiliations and support the Motion to enhance servant leadership.
“If indeed we are honest, sincere and committed to resolving the demands of the public servants, then we must be prepared to demonstrate our sincerity by taking a cut in our pay packages,” said Namwamba.
Noting the enormous challenge before him in lobbying for support from his colleagues in the House Namwamba said he was ready for the task stating several legislators across the political divide had already promised to stand by him, led by Makueni MP Daniel Maanzo who had accompanied him to the briefing.
“I want to appeal to the leadership of CORD, President Uhuru Kenyatta to support this Motion—I have already begun lobbying intensely,” added Namwamba.