Thursday, April 12, 2007

Stunning even more people: PM Lee will donate his pay raise!

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Just a follow up on my previous post on " PM Lee's Salary Stuns white house official "

In even more stunning news from channelnewsasia:

"Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong says he will hold his own salary at the present level for five years and will donate any increases in his salary during that period.

He made the announcement in Parliament on Wednesday, as the House continues its debate on salary revisions for government ministers and civil servants.

Mr Lee said making a large adjustment in public sector salaries now is politically a most difficult decision.

But it is something that must be done.

While it is very difficult to get people to understand and emotionally accept it, he said the issue is absolutely critical.

"If we do not tackle it now, the problem will not go away; it will just get worse - we will be in serious trouble," he said.

After discussing it at length in Cabinet, and with Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong and Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew in particular strongly encouraging him to do it, PM Lee decided to move now because of the overriding importance of keeping public sector salaries competitive.

The Prime Minister said that to make clear why he is doing this, and to give him the moral standing to defend this policy to Singaporeans, he will hold his own salary at its present level for five years.

The Government will pay him his full pay, because that is how the system must work.

But for five years, he will donate the increase in his salary from this and subsequent revisions.

Mr Lee said he does not expect other Ministers to follow......" Full story

While this is a noble move I mean it is really nice that he decided to donate his pay raise, I cannot help but feel this is more of a political move to sooth the pissed of $2000 a month lower - middle income class.

In other news from yahoo sg:

"Singapore is governed by extraordinary men willing to make personal sacrifices, said MP for Tampines GRC Irene Ng in Parliament.

The MP, who supported the civil service and ministerial pay revisions, cited the contrasting fortunes of two former labour chiefs, Lim Chee Onn and Lim Boon Heng.

The first left public office for the private sector, while the latter joined the public sector after a successful stint in the private sector.

Ms Ng said that Mr Lim Boon Heng is currently paid "a small fraction" of the $5.5m-$5.7m that Mr Lim Chee Onn now earns in the private sector.

This, she said, is a "stark contrast between the reward systems for high-calibre people who stay in politics and for those who leave it." full story

Once again, our dear MPs just love to compare public and private sectors, talking about money money money....

Maybe I am just idealistic in nature, but isn't public service not just about HIGH PAY?! Yes I agree that money is a very pragmatic issue and we should compensate good and talented ministers properly (ONLY AFTER THEY PROVE THEMSELVES), but this has gotten to a stage where I feel that my leaders are motivated by cash and not because they are intersted in the general welfare of the populance... I guess I will get shipped off to batam once i grow old and cannot perform :)


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