- Says doing so would show they care for their people
The Member of Parliament (MP) for Mogoditshane Tumiso Rakgare has challenged his fellow MPs to surrender their daily sitting allowances.
Rakgare said this when responding to the budget speech in Parliament yesterday (Tuesday).
Rakgare, who is also the Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Development, said MPs should give up their sitting allowances and instead use the money to advance and complete backlog projects in their constituencies.
“I want to challenge Honourable MPs to give up their daily allowances because there is an outcry that many development projects are lagging behind and there is poverty,” he said. “I suggest that we surrender our allowances and rely on our monthly salaries.”
“It is public knowledge that we receive claim P450 on a daily basis and when the week ends, the government pops out P141 750 to cover all 63 MPs.” said Rakgare.
Rakgare added that surrendering their daily allowances would show that MPs care about their constituents. “We should be seen to be caring for our people because this allowance can go a long way in assisting our people,” he said.
In the lead-up to the 2019 general elections, Parliament passed a bill tabled by then Minister of Presidential Affairs Nonofo Molefhi tabled for adjusting of MPs’ salaries by 4 percent, another 11 percent to delink the salaries from the public service structure, 50 percent to adjusting their constituency allowances and 10 to increase their fixed allowances.
The result was sitting allowances for MPs at P450 per day, for the Speaker and Deputy Speaker at P600 and P500 per day, and for Chairpersons of Parliamentary Committees to P500 per day.
Molefhi had motivated for his bill by saying MPs had been retiring into poverty and spoke of consideration being made for introducing allowances for former MPs to ensure their dignity.