Gov’t to clear salary arrears owed to civil servants
The national Ministry for Finance and Planning has been ordered to clear all the salary arrears of civil servants, both within the country and at foreign missions.
The directive was issued by President Salva Kiir during his state of the nation address on the 11th independence anniversary celebration.
Kiir said his government had embarked on putting in place permanent solutions to the economic crisis the country currently faces.
“I have directed the Ministry of Finance and Planning to pay all the salary arrears owed to public servants, a task they are about to accomplish at the moment,” Kiir said.
“The Ministry has also started the payment of salary arrears owed to diplomatic missions and it will continue paying them until all our diplomats are paid their arrears.”
The Head of State pointed out that the country postponed its official independence, assuring the public that such economic challenges brought by war and COVID-19 were short-lived.
“The lagging economic difficulties responsible for these scaled-down celebrations will not remain with us for a long time. “We will work collectively to find a permanent solution that will address it once and for all,” he assured the citizens.
No more arrears
Last month, the governor of the Bank of South Sudan, Moses Makur, told the press that the country would be free from salary arrears by this month (July).
“We want to pay six months’ arrears. We have started with two now. The other two will be paid after June 18, while the payments for the last [two months] will be paid at the end of June. After June there will be no arrears,” he said.
He said they would announce after the outstanding salaries have been cleared and inform the public about the new plans on how salaries would be paid to civil servants across the country.
“After clearing of 6 months’ salary arrears, there will be a press conference to announce [the payment] and plans of monthly payment of salaries. That will be announced in detail. There is a plan already although it is not signed to guarantee that,” he affirmed.
Makur said the current salary structure was not enough to sustain a family although it has been doubled.
He added that the salaries must be reviewed and the lowest salary be determined using the budget which could sustain a family of five and cater for their basic needs.
However, the national Minister for Information, Michael Makuei Lueth, had said the government had formed a committee to work with the Ministry of Public Service to design a new salary structure that will be helpful to all the citizens.
“The last time we increased the salary by 100 percent, [but] the 100 percent to a soldier is nothing because if the salary was SSP 1,200, then it will be SSP 2,400. So, we have decided to set up a technical committee to work out a new salary structure altogether in accordance with the situation on the ground,” said Makuei said.
“It’s thereafter that a presentation will be made and the government will be in a position to decide what to do and also put into consideration the amendment of the payment and privileges act which was the law governing the salaries of the constitution post holders.”
Kiir announced a 100 per cent salary increment during the 10th Anniversary of South Sudan’s Independence.