15 March 2014

Kenya: Grow Economy to Cut Wage Bill - Rutto

THE debate on whether public servants should take a pay cut continues to rage on as Council of Governors and teachers termed it unacceptable.

Council chairman Isaac Rutto said President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto cannot reduce the high wage bill through pay cut.

Speaking in Bomet county yesterday, Rutto said the government should plan on how to grow the economy by double digits instead of resorting to unnecessary deductions of their salaries. "The country needs serious structural adjustment programmes that will sustain the economy," Rutto said.

The Bomet governor said the executive should engage experts to put in place structures that can turn around the economy as promised by the Jubilee in the runup to the March 4 elections last year.

"There should be a conducive environment for business to flourish. The private sector should be helped to absorb high number of employees in all cadres," Rutto said.

Meanwhile, David Sankok, who runs Loita Medical Clinic in Narok town has urged the government to abolish the provincial administration to reduce the public wage bill. He said the system was replaced by the county government and has no role in the current constitution.

Sankok echoed sentiments by Ainamoi MP Benjamin Langat that nominated seats be abolished to bring down the wage bill. He said if the government goes ahead to effect the pay cuts, professionals may opt to seek employment in foreign countries.

"The nominated senators, MPs, and MCAs represent their own interests and they should be scrapped immediately. The President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto should take these bold steps to save money taken by these persons," said Sankok.

The elite advised the president to first seal all the corruptions loopholes before talking of reducing salaries. "It is unfair for the government to talk of salary pay cut and these will demoralise civil servants who have been tirelessly working for Kenyans," Sankok said.

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