President Joyce Banda and her deputy Khumbo Kachali are getting full salaries despite their pledge four months ago to cut their pay by 30 percent, The Daily Times understands.
However, the State House has downplayed the issue, describing it a mere administrative delay.
That the presidents are getting full pay was disclosed yesterday in Lilongwe when officials of Public Service Management appeared before the Parliamentary Committee on Public Appointments and Declaration of Assets.
The committee’s Chairperson, Chitipa North parliamentarian Nick Masebo, confirmed in an interview yesterday that although so much has been said about the salary cut, they learnt yesterday that no deduction has been made yet.
“They told us that the issue is administrative because although the declarations on the salary cut were made, the Public Service Management is waiting for official written document on the same to start effecting the cut,” he said.
However, Press Secretary in the President’s Office Steve Nhlane said this was not an issue at all because it was bordering on administrative delay.
“Once everything has been processed the salary will be cut from September when she announced about the salary cut. It’s just an administrative issue; it’s a very small thing,” he said.
Spokesperson in the Vice President’s Office Kondwani Munthali referred the matter to the Office of the President and Cabinet, when asked on the matter yesterday.
Chief Secretary to the President and his two deputies were said to be engaged in different meetings when The Daily Times tried to seek their views on the delay.
President Banda earns K1.5 million a month, while Kachali pockets K1 million.
By now, the government would have saved a total of K2.25 million had they implemented the pledged salary cut from September to date.
The two top citizens were widely commended for their gesture when they announced that they had offered to cut their salaries by 30 percent in the spirit of the austerity budget.
However, Malawi Economic Justice Network (Mejn) last week said Banda’s excessive internal and foreign trips are rendering her pay cut a sham.