-Faces Removal If…; But Speaker &Deputy Moye Jointly Refuse Claims
By Mark N. Mengonfia
Some members of the House of Representatives have vowed to ensure that House Speaker Bhofal Chambers is removed, if he and Deputy Speaker Prince Moye refuse to reduce their salaries.
After the official closure of that body’s regular session, few members of that body raised an issue that Speaker Chambers and Deputy Speaker Moye have refused to have their budget cut; something which according to them, runs contrary to what they (lawmakers) agreed upon in the salary harmonization process.
The lawmakers indicated that failure on the Speaker and his deputy to have their salaries cut in line with the harmonization process, they will ensure that the Speaker and Deputy are removed from their positions upon their return from the break.
Reading from a prepared text, George D. Watkins, Political Affairs & Communications Officer in the office Speaker said “Speaker Chambers’ Office did receive US$1,221, 123 in the last Fiscal Year 2018/2019 and was reduced to US$1,043, 265 for this current budget period, whilst Deputy Speaker received US$766,381 last Fiscal Year 2018/2019 and was reduced to US$722,942 for the current budget period”
Additionally, he said “Therefore, Speaker Chambers and Deputy Speaker Moye, hereby make it unequivocally clear that they have already as of the passage of the budget, made individual cuts in their respective compensation lines by 31.9% and 35.6%”.
He added “regarding concerns raised by few members of the House of Representatives on the issues of remuneration at the Capitol Building, following the passage of the 2019/2020 Fiscal Budget, the Office of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dr. Bhofal Chambers, wishes to clarify that it remains committed to earlier agreement with the Executive Branch on salary harmonization across Government.The Leadership of the House of Representatives therefore calls on colleague-members to always gather the real facts on issues of concern affecting the Legislature for proper messaging to the public.”
The joint press conference by the two heads of that body has raised more concerns rather than clarity.
After the Speaker and Deputy Speaker joint conference, Rep.
Francis Dopoh said” we are not discussing slashed in budget, but we are talking about salaries and benefits”
The River Gee County District two lawmaker said “the Speaker and Deputy Speaker cannot tell us that they have reduced their budget.
The lawmakers are heavily divided over cuts in their salaries and information from an insider has it that members of that body are expected to return shortly to settle the matter.