24 Oct 2003

Solomons Government says no pay increases despite big injection of AusAID

11:35 am on 24 October 2003

Solomon Islands government has ruled out using any of the money provided by Australia for public services, to increase the wages of government workers.

The finance minister, Francis Zama says the money - almost 13 million US dollars - will be under tight budgetary control..

He says although some of the money will be used for wages and salaries, it will not be used to meet increases in pay currently being sought by the Public Employees Union.

But the general secretary of the union, Clement Waiwori, says public servants have experienced a decline of more than 60-percent in purchasing power in the last ten years.

"Public officers are part of the government and management and they must be motivated to carry out their functions, and implement government policies from time to time. And if you can't motivate them or you can't give them incentives, how would you expect them to perform in implementing government policies?"

The general secretary of Solomon Islands Public Employees Union, Clement Waiwori.