The Minority in Parliament has rejected suggestions by the Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah that lawmakers should consider taking voluntary salary cuts to help the government fund its flagship programmes due to the economic crisis in the country.
This comes after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo reduced the salaries of all his appointees by up to 30 percent.
Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah who doubles as the MP for Ofoase Ayirebi constituency urged his fellow colleagues to consider a pay cut as a way of contributing to the development of Ghana.
“When all the cuts are done and everything reviewed, I will propose to my colleague MPs to take voluntary cuts to their salaries. I am an MP and a Minister but I receive payment as an MP and not a minister and so I am the same as an MP,” he said in an interview on Accra-based Asempa FM.
He continued: “If the government does cuts from top to bottom, I will plead with the MPs to also do voluntary pay cuts because when it comes to compensation, the system determines but we can also take voluntary cuts.
“The cuts that the executive is contemplating, when everything is said and done and if the executive decides to cut salaries by X percent in this difficult times, then I will propose that we all take cuts on the parliamentary side to help the salvage the situation. We must all come together to solve our challenges and this is my personal view.”
The NDC MPs reacting to the pay cuts suggested by Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah said they will not accept the government’s offer.
The Member of Parliament for Akatsi North, Peter Nortsu-Kotoe told TV3, “If the executive is talking about this then they should also look at the emoluments. What facilities do they have? As an executive, they have more facilities than the legislators.”
According to the NDC, “We for instance, provide a number of facilities for ourselves. We pay our drivers, we pay our secretariat, we buy our own fuel. So if the executive is cutting their salaries, are they removing those facilities they enjoy? If those facilities they enjoy will be there then the pay cut for the legislators will not be a fair deal of us.”
On the part of the Komenda Edina Eguafo Abrem MP, Samuel Atta Mills said, “What kind of pay cut? They should let their own people take pay cuts. Their people are on boards, do you know how much they are making from these boards?“
“They haven’t given us common fund for over a year now. The pay cut thing is just a gimmick. If we are going to take a pay cut, what are they going to use the money for? We gave them millions of cedis to use for COVID, have they come to tell us what they used the money for? It is not about the pay cut, it is about irresponsibility on their part.”