‘No regrets’ – President says of 50% salary increase for Ministers

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At a time when teachers are on a countrywide strike for a better salary, Head-of-State, David Granger says he does not regret granting Government Ministers and other officials a 50% increase in their salary just a few months after the APNU+AFC assumed office in 2015.

President Granger, who hosted his first press conference for the year on Friday at the Ministry of the Presidency, said that the salary increase was granted so that “Ministers could pay attention to their duties” and that it was “not as massive as some people thought.”

“They’re not going to have another salary increase and as far as I’m concerned there is no regret.

“It is something that I think needed to be done early in the administration and I think the Ministers are able now better to pay attention to their ministerial functions without worrying about that issue,” President Granger told the media.

As previously reported, Cabinet ministers receive $10,439,124 annually, a 50% increase from what was previously stated in the Principal Act. Also enjoying a 50% increase is Speaker of the National Assembly who will remain on par with Cabinet ministers as well as the Leader of the Opposition. Their monthly earnings will be just under $870,000 from the $579,000 monthly under the previous administration.

Mr Granger and his government have come in for heavy criticisms since the increase and given the burning issue with the teachers, the political Opposition and civil society believe that teachers deserve a better salary.

As a matter of fact, Leader of the Opposition and former President, Bharrat Jagdeo believe that the Government can cut down on some expenses which will pave the way for teachers to be properly compensated.

Vice Presidents, other than the Prime Minister are paid $11,135,064 per annum.

Junior Ministers of Government earn $8,346,492, an over 16% increase from the annual salary of a Cabinet minister under the former administration who was earning $6,959,412 annually.

The Prime Minister, Moses Nagamootoo receive $20,580,000 annually, an over $2M increase from what was previously stipulated in the Principal Act, taking his monthly salary to over $1.7M.

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