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30 000 PNG Government workers added to state Payroll

WARD councillors, village land mediators, village court magistrates and peace officers will soon be earning fortnightly salaries.
Cabinet last week approved that its servants at the village level be put on the government payroll.
The news will bring much happiness to more than 30,000 people, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill said last night. 
There are currently about 80,000 government servants on the payroll, with teachers numbering 30,000 alone. 
The decision will mean an additional K100 million on the government wages bill each year.
It also means that those village-based workers will be earning a fortnightly salary where once they received the occasional allowance and some never.
O’Neill said the submission from the inter-government relations minister was approved because these workers were the only face of government in rural settings and performed a thankless task throughout the year with little recompense.
“This is basically because these people are just given allowances to do the bulk of the work at the village level,” he said.
“These people – village court magistrates, ward councillors, village constables, peace officers and land mediators – do so much work that we take for granted.
“They are often the only face of government in the villages. 
“We have to appreciate their efforts and reward them as we do all other government servants. 
“They deserve to be on the government payroll.”
The decision is also consistent with the government’s move to empower and resource the rural sector where the bulk of the population is, O’Neill said.
Implementing the decision including working out salary tables and rates will be a huge task and while the desire is to implement the decision in 2014, he said it might be 2015 before the decision was rolled out.
O’Neill said budget discussions currently under way would also impact the timing for implementation of the decision.

The National

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