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Sierra Leone Business: Civil servants salaries upped by 10%

Civil servants will see an increase in their salaries, according to a statement in the recently approved Supplementary Government Budget for the Financial Year, 2018 in Parliament by the Minister of Finance.
This increase the Minister says will cost Government Le24.6 billion for the second half of the year and benefit 49,181 Government workers, which account for 71 percent of the public sector work force. As part of the mitigating measures, Government will be providing 10 percent of the basic salary of all civil servants, teachers, police, military, correctional services and National Fire Authority in grades 1 to 6 as transport allowance.
The total Government expenditure for January to June, 2018 amounted to Le 3.16 trillion, of which, recurrent expenditure was Le 2.06 trillion, less than the budgeted amount of Le 2.46 billion. Wages and Salaries amounted to Le 1.06 trillion by end June 2018.
Under the sub-topic of Expenditure Control and Management Measures, the Minister stated that the current practice for the payment of end of service gratuity to contract workers as stipulated in the public service code is that contract workers are paid 15 percent of their annual gross salary as gratuity.
At the same time, Civil Servants are paid one month of gross salary for every year of service rendered. This practice he says disadvantages Civil Servants and other low-income public sector workers whose income are already low.
As part of the commitment to harmonize the wage bill and rationalize expenditures, payment of gratuity to contract workers, civil servants, and personnel of other Government Departments and Agencies including state-owned enterprises and NASSIT is now one month of the last gross salary of the Officer for year it relates. “Except those whose current employment terms and conditions are statutorily stated or stipulated by His Excellency the President. Similarly, payment of Leave allowance to all public sector workers including state-owned enterprises, state-owned banks, NASSIT and all extra-budgetary agencies including TSA agencies is now one month of gross salary” he says.
As part of their measures to reduce the huge bill on vehicle purchase and maintenance as well as fuel consumption, the Minister says that the Government is developing a Fleet Management Policy that will eventually lead to a Pooled Vehicle Tracking System for the use of Government and donor-funded project vehicles.
Despite efforts to contain these expenditures, the government said that they had already spent Le4.4 billion for vehicle maintenance for the first half of 2018. In 2017, expenditure on fuel and lubricants and vehicle maintenance amounted to Le10.4 billion and Le25.9 billion, respectively.
Minister Saffa stressed that until the policy is adopted by Government, fuel supplies to eligible officers remain at 45 litres per week, fuel supplies to residences of public sector workers have been terminated excluding the heads of the three arms of Government and their deputies. This policy covers Ministries, Departments, Sub-vented agencies, State Owned Enterprises and NASSIT, which is aimed at controlling expenditure on vehicle maintenance, as average expenditure per Government vehicle will not exceed six million Leones (Le6 million) for the period July- December 2018.
By Zainab Iyamide Joaque
Monday July 09, 2018.

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