11 May 2016 17:50pm
WINDHOEK, 11 MAY (NAMPA) Some Members of Parliament (MPs) in the National Council (NC) think the remuneration of the president and the vice-president should be increased with urgency.
The MPs, who are all Swapo councillors from the Kavango West Region, made the recommendation during the debate on the second reading of the Presidential Remuneration and Other Benefits Bill of 2016 in the NC on Wednesday.
They said when looking at the president and the vice-president's duties, they deserve to be paid according to their workload.
Kavango West Regional Councillor Rosa Kavara called for the urgent review of the Bill because what the president earns cannot be compared to the remuneration of other leaders around the world, who earn more. She is of the opinion that an increase in salary will give off a good impression of Namibia.
Kavara said the president's remuneration should be increased with urgency and that previous Namibian heads of state, who have contributed a lot to the country, should also be taken care of when they retire.
Another regional councillor from the Kavango West Region, Lukas Muha said the Bill does not look at benefiting one particular individual; instead it will help the country in fighting corruption and enhance transparent governance.
Another issue raised during the debate was the reference made to a president's spouse because the Bill was not clear on whether more than one spouse in a customary marriage would also receive allowances, compared to a president's one spouse in a civil marriage.
The bill lacks background and content of specification for anyone to make sound judgement and for individuals to make relevant contributions, said Kavango West Regional Councillor Nakambare Haikera.
Chairperson of the NC Margaret Mensah-Williams informed the August House that perhaps further research would have to be done before passing the Bill to establish whether it would be accepted for a female Namibian president to have more than one spouse in a customary marriage.
The Presidential Remuneration and Other Benefits Bill 2016 provides for the payment of remuneration and other benefits including medical aid to the president and his or her spouse, and to the vice-president and his or her spouse; and to provide for incidental matters.
The debate was adjourned until Thursday.