Kenyan state officers to receive 12.5% pay cut

KenyaState officers in Kenya’s National Assembly, Senate, and the Executive of the National government will receive a 12.5% pay cut in order to reduce the public sector wage bill.

The Salary and Remuneration Commission (SRC), which sets and reviews salary and benefits for state officers in Kenya, has recommended a new pay structure for government officials in its Salary structures for state officers 2017-22 report. The change in salary structure aims to ensure the public sector wage bill is below 35% of domestic revenue. The wage bill currently stands at 52% of domestic revenue.

The new pay model, which includes a fixed salary structure guided by economy performance, the reduction of some allowances, the abolition of other allowances and benefits, and the zoning of transport allowances by distance, is expected to accrue savings of KSh8,853,204,952 (£66,337,241).

Monthly gross remuneration for state officers in the Senate, National Assembly, and Executive of the National Government will fall by up to 12.5%. This will see remuneration for members of the Senate and the National Assembly fall from KSh710,000 (£5,280) to KSh621,250 (£4,620) a month.

The president’s monthly gross remuneration package will decrease from KSh1,650,000 (£12,363) to KSh1,443,750 (£10,818), and the deputy president’s monthly gross remuneration package will fall from KSh1,402,500 (£10,508) to KSh1,227,188 (£9,195).

State officers in Kenya’s County Government will also see their remuneration decrease. Remuneration for members of the County Assembly will decline from KSh165,000 (£1,227) to KSh144,375 (£1,074) a month.

Under the new structure, benefits that will be abolished for state officers in the County Government, the Senate, and the National Assembly include a reimbursable mileage allowance, a sitting allowance for plenary sessions, and a special responsibility allowance. The governor’s allowance and deputy governor’s allowance in the County Government will also be abolished, as will a special parliamentary allowance for state officers in the Senate and National Assembly.

The new salary structure will come into effect when the newly elected officers are sworn into office following the country’s general election on 8 August 2017. The pay structure will remain in place until 2022, in line with the SRC’s four-year pay review policy.

When creating the new salary structure, the SRC took into account results from a salary survey conducted in countries with similar gross domestic product (GDP) levels, as well as policy issues and constitutional principles. It also sought to reduce disparities in remuneration levels.

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The report states: “The ultimate goal of the SRC is to bring the wage bill, which currently stands at 52%, to sustainable levels of below 35% of the domestic revenue. This will go a long way in ensuring that the public sector wage bill is within the threshold provided for by the Public Finance Management Act.

“We are accountable to Kenyans; and as public servants, we cannot ignore the element of sacrifice as opposed to pay as we serve our country. We should strive towards being a producing country as opposed to a consuming one. We are appealing to the employing agencies to critically look at the numbers as we have a bloated workforce. The wage bill is a factor of employee numbers and actual remuneration. The aim is to ensure we have optimal numbers in the public sector for efficient and effective service delivery.”