A need for equity in public office bearers remuneration

South African public office bearers who earn a salary of more than R1 million will enjoy a zero percent salary adjustment for the 2013/14 financial year. That is if the Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers has its way.

The Commission released its 2013/14 recommendations yesterday which include a sliding scale salary adjustment. The phrase public office bearers includes members of parliament, members of provincial legislature, local government councilors and traditional leaders.

The Commission said in statement its sliding scale was designed to address inequities in the universe of public office bearers. The sliding scale is captured in the following table:

Below R 500 000 7%
Between R500 000 – R 800 000 5%
Between R800 000 – R1 000 000 4%
Above R1 000 000 0%

The Commission said the “cut-off” thresholds in this sliding scale were determined by carefully examining the salary scales and mid-point differentials between various levels of positions. “Under these “cut-offs”, there are no circumstances of overlapping “salary scales” of positions.”

 “The effective date for salary adjustment is 01 April 2013 and for local government public office bearers is 01 July 2013. The adjustment is recommended in order to align the recommendation with the financial year of public office bearers’ institutions.”

The Commission added that the sliding scale was infused with a number of objectives. These are to:

  • Overcome perpetual perceptions on remuneration inequities reinforced by an increase of the same percentage for all categories of public office bearers,
  • Address a call by Commission stakeholders on the widening wage gap between the remuneration levels,
  • Ensure gradual internal equity amongst the recipients, and
  • Set an example to the private sector.

The Commission added that it “further recommends that a basic salary component equal to 60% of the total package, which constitutes the pensionable salary of Magistrates be increased to 70% with effect from 01 April 2013 similar to Senior Managers in public service.”

Together with several other recommendations these have been submitted to the office of the President and the Parliament.


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