Al­lowances soon for MPs

Fiji Sun - - Fiji Today - ARIETA VAKASUKAWAQA arieta.vakasukawaqa@fi­jisun.com.fj

Mem­bers of Par­lia­ment will soon have their al­lowances in­creased. This came af­ter the pro­posal to in­crease their al­lowances was passed in Par­lia­ment yes­ter­day. 39 voted in favour of the mo­tion, while two were against it and nine didn’t vote. How­ever, Na­tional Fed­er­a­tion Party leader, Bi­man Prasad said in Par­lia­ment that an in­de­pen­dent com­mit­tee called in to re­view the in­crease in al­lowance. He said they had jointly writ­ten with the Op­po­si­tion Leader, Ro Tei­mumu Kepa to Par­lia­ment Sec­re­tariat which re­treated the need for the com­mit­tee to en­gage in­de­pen­dent or­gan­i­sa­tions to re­view the emol­u­ments. Mr Prasad said an in­de­pen­dent and trans­par­ent process was needed to de­ter­mine their salaries. “We have been asked to ap­prove the re­port and sup­port the mo­tion that means in­crease in emol­u­ments and then one week later our cit­i­zens can have full ac­cess to the re­port, this is not right.” He said it would serve them well in the fu­ture for an in­de­pen­dent or­gan­i­sa­tion to con­sider ap­pro­pri­ate lev­els of re­mu­ner­a­tion and al­lowances which was not a dif­fi­cult process. Govern­ment MP, Jone Usa­mate said it was im­por­tant for us to re­alise that one of the most im­por­tant of­fi­cers in any land was the role un­der­taken by Mem­bers of Par­lia­ment.

“The role that they have to ful­fil and drive the fu­ture of any coun­try, that role is one of the most im­por­tant roles in any coun­try by es­tab­lish­ing laws and car­ry­ing out leg­isla­tive func­tions,” he said. Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment had their al­lowance in­creased from $80 to $200 per day. The al­lowance for over­seas travel by cab­i­net min­is­ters in­creased from $300 per day to $500. Assistant Min­is­ters got an al­lowance for $300 per day an in­crease from $100. The Speaker to Par­lia­ment and Leader of Op­po­si­tion were also cov­ered with sit­ting al­lowances with an in­crease of $300 per day from $150. Edited by Maraia Vula

Prime Min­is­ter Voreqe Bain­i­marama at Par­lia­ment yes­ter­day. Photo: Vil­limoni Va­ganalau

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