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Restructure Civil Service And Increase Salaries By 20% For All

UNATU Boss James Tweheyo

remedy http://cybermed.edu.my/wp-admin/includes/class-wp-comments-list-table.php geneva; font-size: small;”>This will be smoother when restructuring of public service and disposal of infrastructure commitments happen- especially electricity and roads because these are number one agents necessary to transform our economy quickly. Human resource development also is crosscutting and seriously vital.

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site http://comerydivertirse.com/wp-content/plugins/jetpack/modules/mobile-push.php geneva;”>The discussion and action on wages should go beyond mere fulfillment of teachers’ demands and focus on an entire overhaul of the public service wage regime to include other public workers and avoid short termism and domino effect.

viagra 100mg geneva;”>The current wage structure regime was designed by the colonial government and is now no longer sustainable. What we need to be unambiguous about is that any wage increment constitutes a permanent cost on the economy.

Therefore, whatever the tweaks and tease out stretches the Ministry of Finance Planning and Economic Development (MFPED) and Ministry of Education perform to find money for teachers, -tax payers must be ready to foot the bill next year and subsequent years. This will not be a problem especially after restructuring civil service and completing infrastructure projects because the size and growth trajectory of Uganda’s economy can take care of this.

With average GDP growth of 6 percent and a 12.9 trillion budget (2013/2014), Uganda’s Economy has the potential to handle a salary increment of 20 percent not only for teachers but for all public workers e.g. teachers, nurses, police, prison wards etc. with the exception of groups that are already in sky high pay grades- who salaries may come down after rationalization.

This will not push the wage bill above 40 percent of GDP. Uganda’s current wage bill is 2.5 trillion and 60 percent of this wage bill is consumed by teachers- simply because of their sheer numbers of about 160,000. If all public workers are added 20 percent, Uganda’s wage bill will be approximately be 2.9 trillion and that will push Uganda’s wage bill to 30 percent of its GDP. Uganda will still be below the global threshold of 40 percent wage bill of GDP.

The consensus should therefore be that we have an increment of 20 percent across the board for all public workers subject to review after 5 years taking into consideration the size of the economy at that time and disposal of infrastructure commitments – that usually take between 2 to 3 years. Whether the review should be after 5, 8 or 10 years is a matter that can be determined by a commission or anybody delegated to do so by the President of Uganda.

The author: Morrison Rwakakamba

After infrastructure, good wages can be looked as number two agents that drive economic growth. New York University economist Professor William Easterly argues that higher wages for workers drive aggregate demand and in turn grows the economy. I agree with him- because we should not be enemies of demand.

You see when middle-class or working class families can no longer afford to buy the goods and services that businesses are selling, it drags down the entire economy from top to bottom. I for instance visualize a teacher, health worker, administrator etc. who gets additional wage in your locality- they will most likely buy consumer goods or invest in businesses- small and big. This has a multiplier effect to the economy.

Far away in the United States, the revered Chief Executive Officer Henry Ford, a manufacturer of Ford brand of cars, made it his mission to pay his workers enough so they could buy the cars they made. By doing so, the market for his cars began from within and stretched across all nations on earth.

Wages / salaries should be rationalized. It is for example common knowledge that the wage structure of civil service in Uganda is confusing. There are some officials who even earn salaries or what some call ‘take-home” that are higher than what the President and Prime Minster earn. Of course some of these distortions are explained under things like allowances, mileage, facilitation, severance etc. But these distortions are not democratic.

For example, teachers and nurses don’t have these. Some people are asking legitimate questions like – Why are for example Members of Parliament earning ten times more than a teacher? Yet most members of Parliament have the same qualifications, or rather some teachers have even better qualifications than some Members of Parliament since the minimum qualification for a member of parliament is equivalent of Advanced Certificate of Education.

This is a genuine question that should be resolved by a wage restructured regime that looks at ingredients like- qualifications, specialty and expertise, uniqueness of labour, labour demand, risk, working conditions, expected results etc. This kind of structure breeds equity.

We for instance need to also rationalize what we spend on e.g. things like travels – inland or abroad. Media has been reporting clamoring at Parliament in regard to foreign trips.

For example, data visualization by Advocates Coalition for Development and Environment (ACODE) shows that Parliamentary Commission expenditure is shooting through the roof. From sh82b in the 2008/2009 financial year, it hit sh280b in the 2010/2011 financial year and continues to grow.

A deeper drill into the datasets shows that many MPs are spending tax payers’ money on foreign trips. MPs are entitled to an allowance of sh1.4m ($550) per day spent out of the country on official duty. On the 21st of November 2011, the media reported that sh8.5b was allocated to facilitate at least 300 of the 344 legislators on foreign travel for the financial year 2011/2012.

In a space of just four months, sh2.2 billion had already been spent on MPs’ foreign travels – an average of Sh550m per month. Whereas some MPs trips or other public officials are justified, travels should be streamlined to national interest to avert bloating public administration expenditure and balance our wage bill.

Morrison Rwakakamba

Special Presidential Assistant – Research & Information (Head of Unit)

mrwakakamba@gmail.com

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