OPM says PM Holness does not receive separate pay as MP or cabinet minister
The Office of the Prime Minister says Prime Minister Andrew Holness does not receive separate compensation as a Member of Parliament or as a cabinet minister.
The Prime Minister who constitutionally must be an elected Member of Parliament and Chairman of the cabinet is also minister responsible for the Office of the Prime Minister, Minister Responsible for the Cabinet Office, and Minister Responsible for the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation.
An OPM statement says for these discrete functions he receives only one salary.
This is in keeping with the long-established principle of the government, that persons paid from the consolidated fund shall only receive one salary regardless of the number of discrete jobs or functions they perform.
In cases where persons hold multiple jobs or have discrete functions, the office holder would be compensated at the highest salary of the jobs or functions they hold.
OPM says there have been assertions to the effect that while Prime Minister Holness will not take the new salary as prime minister, the higher salaries for cabinet ministers or combination of members’ of parliament and ministers’ salaries would be applied.
The statement says the prime minister’s compensation will remain at its previous level, no new or special allowance will apply, and no retroactive payments will apply to the prime minister’s compensation.
It notes that another question that has been raised is for how long the compensation of the prime minister would be removed from the new salary scale.
In response to this, Prime Minister Holness stated, “this has broader implications for not only the current holder of the Office of Prime Minister, but previous holders of the office, and possibly future holders.
He adds that a prime minister with a new mandate could always review the position.”
Meantime, earlier today the Opposition said it wanted it to be made clear, if Prime Minister Andrew Holness will receive a salary increase in his capacity as Minister of Defence and Economic Growth and Job Creation.
Following continued public outcry against the level of increase approved for the political directorate, Mr. Holness on Monday said he had instructed that he be excluded from the increase.
The Prime Minister was expected to receive a salary of 22.3 million dollars as of April 2022, then 25.3 million as of this April and 28.6 million as of April 2024.
Mr. Holness will retain his nine-million-dollar annual salary.
Opposition Leader Mark Golding today said the public has a right to know, if Mr. Holness will be collecting increases for his role as minister.
He said that if there can be a roll back for the prime minister’s salary increase, the increases for other politicians should also be rolled back.
Mr. Golding again stated that the increases for the political directorate are unconscionably high, renewing the call for a roll back and for the salary package arrangement to be considered by an independent panel.
Mr. Golding said this is a watershed moment for the country.