SRC urges sustained wage bill reforms to secure funding for development priorities

November 20, 2019 (3 weeks ago) 4:21 pm
SRC Chairperson Lyn Mengich (pictured) Wednesday, noted the wage bill currently take up 48 per cent of national revenue having declined 9 percentage points since 2014./FILE – SRC

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 20 –The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) has emphasized the need for the public wage bill spending to be progressively lowered to attain the 35 per cent threshold compared to government revenue.

SRC Chairperson Lyn Mengich Wednesday, noted the wage bill currently take up 48 per cent of national revenue having declined 9 percentage points since 2014.

She was speaking during a press conference where she stated that a sustainable wage bill will ensure more funds are released to address other aspects of the government priorities under the Big Four Agenda.

“The expansion of public service coverage will continue in the context of achieving the Big Four Agenda and other sustainable development goals,” she said.

Mengich further underscored the need for the formulation of policies that ensure a fiscally sustainable wage bill.

“A wage bill that does not match economic and revenue growth puts pressure on development and investment, the size of the wage bill has an impact on performance of the national economy and the quality of life of citizens,” she said.

Mengich spoke a head of a three-day conference set for next week – November 26-28 – whose key agenda is the transformation of the Kenyan economy through a fiscally sustainable wage bill.

The three arms of government are expected to send representatives to the conference which will also discuss public sector pension liability which has been increasing over the years as more employees retire from civil service.

The retirement age aged for civil servants was recently revised upwards from 55 to 60 years contributing significantly the rise of the pension budget to the current estimate of Sh1 trillion

Other key highlights of the conference include productivity, performance management, labour relations, optimization of public service, work ethic, remuneration and benefits policy.

The conference is therefore expected to have policies and strategies to achieve fiscally sustainable public wage bill, sessional paper on public sector wage bill management and strengthened legal framework for the management of remuneration benefits in the public service.

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