Prime Minister Hon. James Marape, MP, today was sworn-in as a Member of the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) in Port Moresby.
He was among the Minister for Public Service, Hon. Wesley Nukundj and the Acting Deputy Secretary - Policy & Reform for the Department of Personnel Management, William Hapipai, sworn-in by Governor General, Sir Bob Dadae.
PM Marape said the SRC was basically to ensure that our leaders including politicians, government secretaries, managing directors and CEOs of Statutory bodies and State-owned Enterprises were remunerated properly.
“We are economically facing harsh times and working within what is provided for us.
“However, there are huge discrepancies of overpaid and under paid in the various pay systems,” PM Marape said.
He said pay increases are not the focus of this Commission.
“Even I as the PM am paid lesser than some CEOs and MDs of various constitutional bodies; hence this will be looked into by the SRC.
“It is only fair for our people to have a genuine balance in remuneration packages.”
In support of the PM’s remarks, Minister Nukundj said he would discourage increases in salaries for MPs and CEOs of SoEs.
He also said even if the time was right, there was no need for an increase in the salaries for any leader.
“We will also be looking at ways to recognize Prime Ministers after their terms in Office are over similarly to former Governor-Generals and Chief Justices.
Former PMs need to be recognized accordingly for their contribution to our country.
PM Marape further added that the SRC would find a balance in salaries and ensure leaders are remunerated properly.
This ceremony today is just a formality to get the Commission off the ground and starting work.
“Speaking from the SRC perspective, there are other highly paid officers than MPs.
“This is part of a cleaning up process. From the SRC, if there was an increase in salaries, it should be for officers working their way up the rank and file, as they are in the engine room and the backbone of any organization,” PM Marape said.
He said if he had it his way, he would have his own salary cut by 20 per cent as part of the cleaning up process of overpaid leaders.