SRC Clears Air On Allowances In The Public Service

Written By John Mutiso  📝

The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) on Wednesday, 20 April 2022, made a reference to recent media reports on the management of allowances in the public service.

The SRC said that it conducted a study in 2019 that identified 247 different allowances paid invariably to public officers accounting for 48 percent of the total public wage bill.

In a statement issued by SRC, the commission observed that the absence of a clear and comprehensive policy framework to guide the management and administration of allowances in the public service led to the proliferation of allowances and different justification, eligibility criteria, rates, and modes of payment.

According to the statement, this led to a lack of transparency, inequity, and unfairness in coverage, multiplicity and high proportions of allowances to basic salaries, and consequently, disparities in the gross pay paid to public officers.

“The Allowance Policy Guideline aims to streamline the management of allowances, with the resulting impact of improving transparency, accountability, equity, and fairness of pay. This is intended to ensure that the total public compensation bill is affordable and fiscally sustainable,” the statement read.

As required by Articles 10 and 232 of the constitution, the Allowances Policy Guideline was subjected to a consultative and participative stakeholder and public engagement process in October 2021.

“Extensive sensitization sessions were also undertaken with public service institutions, which provided an opportunity for SRC to explain the rationale behind the Allowances Policy Guideline. Views from stakeholders in the public service were received and taken into account in the final Allowances Policy Guideline,” the statement further read.

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The Commission also said that it received data from government agencies, which is now being examined.

“The Commission would like to clarify that no advice has yet been issued on the streamlining of allowances in the public service. Allowances that are currently obtained shall continue to be paid until SRC issues its advice on allowances for public service institutions. The advice will be aligned with the allowances Policy Guideline.”

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