Monday, October 22, 2012

Greasing their palms

In a quiet amendment added to the Finance Bill late Thursday, members of Parliament approved a golden handshake of $110,000 each to be paid after their term ends early next year. The sweetener comes on top of an annual package worth $125,000, which is 70 times more than the average Kenyan worker takes home each year. It would take an average Kenyan worker 61 years to earn the sum that each of the country’s 222 lawmakers would be given under the bonus. The average annual per capital income is roughly $1,800.

 The move comes less than a fortnight after Kenya’s government said it could not afford to cover pay increases demanded by teachers and doctors, who had been on strike for three weeks in September. When the government said it had no money to pay them higher salaries, to then give themselves $25 million is beyond unreasonable. 

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