According to Kiggundu, EC still operates on a salary structure that was set up in 1999, adding that none of the commission staff has received a pay hike despite the hard economic times.
Engineer Badru Kiggundu, the Electoral Commission chairperson has pleaded with parliament for an increment in the salary of the commission staff to enable them cope with the high cost of living. According to Kiggundu, EC still operates on a salary structure that was set up in 1999, adding that none of the commission staff has received a pay hike despite the hard economic times. The Inflation rate in the country stands at 29 percent as compared to 9 percent over ten years ago.
Appearing before the parliamentary legal affairs committee on Wednesday, Kiggundu said Electoral Commission is concerned about the salary disparities in government departments. Kiggundu earns shillings 4.5 million each month compared to shillings 43 million pocketed by the KCCA Executive Director Jennifer Musisi, 18 Million for the IGG, and 36 million for the URA commissioner general. He wants parliament to consider improving the budget of Electoral Commission to allow it offer competitive salaries to staff in order to attract and retain competent human resource.
Kiggundu says that while the commission appeals for a fair salary policy, it is concerned that it cannot cover the wage bill in the medium term expenditure framework (MTEF). The Commission is experiencing a short fall of about 450 million shillings for wages. Responding to the request of the Electoral Commission, Stephen Tashobya, the chairperson of the Legal Affairs Committee said it is unfair that the EC boss earns less than a KCCA driver. According to Tashobya, the position of the EC chairperson is very crucial because he presides over national elections.
He said his committee would followup the matter, with the relevant government department. However, it is not clear whether EC will get a positive response for its salary increment. During the state of the nation address, President Yoweri Museveni said government will focus on infrastructure development, energy and not salaries. He explained the wage bill was consuming up to 25 percent of the national budget, leaving key sectors like health, roads, energy, education and defense to share the remaining percentage.
Citing last financial year, Museveni said Uganda Revenue Authority collected shillings 7.1 trillion, adding that 1.8 billion was spent on salaries alone. He challenged civil servants to forsake their salary increase demands so that the money is pumped into key sectors. EC joins the long queue of government departments demanding for a pay rise to retain existing staff.
ec demands for salary increment