National, News

MPs receive $30,000 medical allowance

By William Madouk


Central Equatoria State (CES) legislators will receive at least $30,000 as their unpaid portion of medical allowance for 2022-2023 fiscal year.

Speaker of the state Assembly, Hon. Peter Wani Kulang, made an announcement to the house during Monday’s sitting on reception of the annual medical allowance for 100 members.

“The chairperson of the standing specialized committee for peace and security received an amount of $30,000, and this money is meant for the members’ medical allowances,” Kulang declared.

He, however, advised the members of the assembly to cease discussing issues before they reached the leadership.

“I am aware of the manners of our members, who always capitalize on information that did not come from the leadership of this parliament,” he noted.

“This issue of money has been talked about for no reason when the assembly leadership is not yet informed officially,” he added.

Speaker Kulang explained that he received the money on Friday but would first hold a meeting with the Assembly Business Committee (ABC) and then inform members of the way forward.

“I received this money last Friday, and I have decided that I will sit with the members of ABC to see what we can do about this, but I don’t know what is wrong with us,” he continued.

“Tomorrow (Today) we will have an extra sitting of ABC, and this will be one of the items on the agenda to discuss with ABC, and then we will officially come to you, the honorable members, and tell you what we want to do as the leadership of this parliament,” he added.

No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper has established that the members of parliament have gone for about six months without salaries and allowances of over three months.

Last month, the Central Equatoria legislators vowed not to debate the state draft budget for fiscal year 2023-2024 unless their salary arrears and allowances were paid.

Mr. Kulang disclosed that he received the draft budget from the minister of finance but declined to table it, saying their demands must first be met.

“I told him (the governor), members are in this situation, and therefore, before we table the budget, their concerns have to be addressed, at least to give them a smile on their faces and to scrutinize the budget and pass it,” he told the house earlier.

“But before that, I cannot attempt tabling it when the Assembly demands are not put in place,” the speaker stressed.

On September 20, 2022, the CES parliament passed the Emoluments and Privileges Bill 2022 for lawmakers and post holders holding public executive offices in the state. The bill saw basic payments adjusted from less than 2 percent to 70 percent.

The state constitutional post holders will enjoy outfit allowances of SSP 1,500,000, with three months’ salary annual stipends and five air tickets business class for each post holder.

The gross emolument for governor stands at SSP 1,200,000, which is the highest in Central Equatoria State.

The speaker of the state assembly follows with SSP 1,100,000; this comes after MPs had a hot debate on who should be second in the state hierarchy between the deputy governor and the speaker in terms of protocol.

The deputy governor will pocket SSP 1,050,000, and the deputy speaker’s payment is adjusted from SSP 950,000 to SSP 970,000.

The emolument draft also increased ministers’ remuneration from SSP 900,000 to SSP 950,000, yet county commissioners’ and mayors’ salaries were reduced to SSP 750,000 from SSP 800,000.

The Deputy Chairperson of the Specialized committee’s salary is adjusted from SSP 750,000 to SSP 800,000; meanwhile, members of parliament’s salaries are adjusted to SSP 760,000 from SSP 650,000.

The chief whip will be receiving SSP 900,000; the chairperson of the specialized committee will pocket SSP 850,000; and the advisor will be receiving 1,000,000 SSP.

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