Cyril Ramaphosa just gave MPs a 2.8% salary increase – but cabinet ministers get nothing

Business Insider SA

  • Cabinet ministers and leaders in Parliament were due to get 3% salary increases this year, with public office bearers earning under R1.5 million slated for 4% increases.
  • But on Friday President Cyril Ramaphosa threw out that recommendation, decreeing that SA's upper echelon of public office bearers will get 0% increases this year.
  • More lowly ranked ordinary MPs and MPLs will get 2.8% increases on their million-rand-plus packages.
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Cabinet ministers and the leaders of Parliament who earn more than R1.5 million per year will get 0% salary increases in 2020, President Cyril Ramaphosa decreed on Friday, while lower-paid office bearers will see increases of around 2.8%.

The pay for top officials is set via a process that includes an Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers, which runs a consultation process and analyses economic factors – but the decision ultimately rests with the President.

And this year Ramaphosa threw out the recommendation of that commission, made public earlier this month, that the government's top earners should get 3% increases, and that lower-paid officials should get 4%.

See also: SA’s minimum wage is increasing on 1 March - here are the new minimums for domestic workers and others

Ramaphosa's decision means that salaries for the likes of deputy president David Mabuza and National Assembly speaker Thandi Modise have been frozen at R2.8 million, rather than increasing to R2.9 million as the commission had recommended.

Lower down the ladder, chairpersons of committees in Parliament will see their salaries increase to just under R1.5 million, but they will be earning some R18,000 per year less than would have been the case in terms of the commission recommendation.

Ramaphosa does not provide formal reasons for his decision, but his administration is expected to announce new or higher taxes next week as it struggles with a huge revenue shortfall.

See also: South Africans may be hit by a once-off tax next week, Old Mutual warns

South Africa's minimum wage will increase by 3.8% in March, a month before the new ministerial and parliamentary salaries kick in, to a general rate of R20.76 per hour.

Here is how much cabinet ministers, MPs, and other public office bearers will be paid from April 2020.

  • The speakers of the National Assembly (NA) and the National Council of Provinces (NCOP), and the deputy president: R2,825,470
  • Cabinet ministers: R2,401,633
  • Provincial premiers: R2,260,409
  • Deputy ministers, the deputy speaker of the NA and deputy chair of the NCOP, provincial speakers and provincial executive council members: R1,977,795.
  • Deputy provincial speakers, majority chief whips in the NA and NCOP, the leader of the opposition in Parliament, and the parliamentary counsellors to the President and deputy president: R1,600,467.
  • Chairpersons of committees in Parliament, and majority-party chief whips in provincial legislatures: R1,495,755.
  • Committee chairs and the leader of the opposition in provincial legislatures: R1,346,235.
  • Leaders of minority parties, the deputy chief whip of the majority party, and the chief whip of the second-largest party in Parliament: R1,346,232.
  • Provincial deputy committee chairs, minority party leaders, the deputy chief whip for the majority and the chief whip of the second-largest party: R1,266,567.
  • Other whips in Parliament: R1,249,236.
  • Members of the NA and delegates to the NCOP, and in provincial legislatures the counsellors to kings and queens, and whips: R1,137,933.
  • Members of provincial legislatures: R1,101,348.

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