‘$4m in wages per day’

Attorney-General and the Minister for Economy, Civil Service and Communications Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum during the February parliament sitting yesterday. Picture: RAMA

THE wages for civil servants and the disciplined forces amount to $4 million per day, Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum told Parliament yesterday.

He made the comments while speaking on a debate on the 2014, 2015, 2016 review of the Ministry of Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations report.

He said civil servants have had enormous pay increases under the FijiFirst Government.

“The nurses have been paid over 80 per cent; today’s heads of schools get paid over $100,000 in large schools,” he said.

“Today, the wages bill of civil servants alone including the disciplined forces is $4 million a day.”

On the Opposition’s criticism of the hiring of expatriate permanent secretaries, he said Fiji only had four expatriate permanent secretaries out of the 21.

“They are Deborah Weiss, Bernadette Welch, Dimity Fifer and Joshua Wycliffe.

“Three of them actually hold dual citizenship. Sanjeewa Parera, Jennifer Poole and Maritino Nemani, these people hold dual citizenship. All others hold Fijian citizenship out of 21. What is the big hocus-pocus about this.”

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said all civil servants had a right to apply for a permanent secretary job and that Government “want the right person for the right job”.

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