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Budget 2010: Salaries for PAP ministers and other political appointments expected to be 8.8 per cent higher than last year

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  • temasekreview
    *Wednesday, February 24, 2010* THE TEMASEK REVIEW The Voice of Singapore from Singaporeans for Singaporeans Budget 2010:
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 24, 2010
      Wednesday, February 24, 2010

      THE TEMASEK REVIEW

      The Voice of Singapore from Singaporeans for Singaporeans

      Budget 2010: Salaries for PAP ministers and other political appointments expected to be 8.8 per cent higher than last year

      February 24, 2010 by admin ?
      Filed under Headlines

      Written by Our Correspondent

      While extensive publicity was given by the state media on the impending hike in foreign workers levy to placate Singaporeans still peeved off with the ruling party over its pro-foreigner policy, little was mentioned about the expected increase in salaries of the PAP ministers and ministers of states this year.

      It was reported in an obscure corner of a seemingly innocuous article on TODAY yesterday with the title “Committed to going green?

      Though the first few paragraphs are about the Ministry of Environment’s spending more on environment technology, the last paragraph contains information about the pay hike which was not reported in the Straits Times:

      “The largest share of Government spending will go to Mindef (24.7 per cent or $11.46 billion) and the Education Ministry (20.8 per cent or $9.66 billion). Salaries for political appointments ?ministers, ministers of state and parliamentary secretaries ?are estimated to be $58.28 million, or 8.8 per cent higher than last year.?lt;/p>

      [Source: TODAY]

      A certain percentage of the Singapore ministers?multi-million salaries is pegged to GDP growth figures. With the Singapore economy expected to grow by 4.5 to 6.5 per cent this year, the salary hike is not surprising.

      Singapore’s Prime Minister is the highest paid leader in the world, earning more than 5 times the annual salary of U.S. President Barack Obama. Even a senior minister of state earns more than Obama.

      Singapore’s strongman Lee Kuan Yew once said that Singaporeans must pay their ministers high salaries found in the private sector to secure their services:

      “…you have to pay the market rate or the man will up stakes and join Morgan Stanley, Lehman Brothers or Goldman Sachs and you would have an incompetent man and you would lose money by the billions!?lt;/em>

      [Source: Straits Times, April 2007]

      GIC, headed by Lee himself, is estimated to have lost about S$59 billion dollars in the fiscal year ending March 2009 and is expected to lose another $10 billion dollars or more when its stake in Swiss bank UBS is converted to shares on 5 March 2010.

      [Source: Wall Street Journal, 29 September 2009]

      Though Lee admitted himself that he is not doing “much work?except forecasting, he costs Singapore taxpayers about S$3 million dollars a year.

      The obscene salaries of the PAP ministers is a sore point of contention among many Singaporeans, but there is very little they can do since the PAP has engineered the electoral system for it win elections after elections.

      With the next election around the corner, it is understandable that the state media is trying hard to divert public attention away from the ministers?pay rise at a time when ordinary Singaporeans are still struggling to make ends meet, thanks to the ruling party’s misguided policies which had led to the relentless influx of foreigners and sky-rocketing HDB flat prices.



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