As part of their ongoing financial probing of the ruling government, the Africanist Press has revealed that a state house correspondent is paid a monthly salary that is equivalent to the annual salary of a senor staff nurse in Sierra Leone.
Africanist Press made this revelation in their press daily updates.
“We present the following additional evidence as part of our ongoing examination of salary disparities among public sector workers in Sierra Leone. We use the following appointment letters below to illustrate the gross employment inequalities that exist among public sector workers in Sierra Leone,” the Press noted.
From the appointment letter, Africanist Press discovered that the monthly salary ( Le21, 762,000) of the State House Correspondent is almost equivalent to the annual pay (Le26, 290, 650) of a Senior Staff Nurse in Sierra Leone; despite the essential services provided by the Senior Staff Nurse.
“Computed annually, Africanist Press found that the annual pay (Le261,144,000) of the State House Correspondent could pay the combined annual salaries of at least 10 Senior Staff Nurses in Sierra Leone. Thus, on average, we discovered that the State House Correspondent earns an annual wage that is the equivalent of the 10 year wages of the Senior Staff Nurse,” they noted.
Africanist Press further notes that this example of gross pay disparity between the State House Correspondent and the Senior Staff Nurse helps them illuminate the extent of workplace inequalities existing between favored members of the administration and other essential public sector employees, including teachers and health care workers.
In payroll records published last week, Africanist Press had also shown that the lowest paid finance official on a sample list of 30 randomly selected officials from Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Finance are each earning 10 times the monthly salaries of Colonels and Lieutenant Colonels, and 40 times more the monthly salaries of NCOs.
“The released payroll data also showed that the combined monthly salaries of the 30 listed finance officials — amounting to Le1,918,279,254.00 (about US$200,000) each month — could pay the total monthly salaries of at least 1,747 soldiers, including junior officers and NCO’s,” Africanist Press uncovered.
According to the Press, when campaigning for the presidency in 2018, Julius Maada Bio promised to address salary disparities in the public service.
“If we are to restore credibility to the service, we must coordinate the wage bill. If we are to enhance staff moral and improve on service delivery, we must control the wage bill. Wages and salaries must be harmonized based on fairness and equity in the use of public resources,” Maada Bio stated in his campaign manifesto of 2018, while emphasizing that “a commissioner or a director or director general must have an aligned appropriate grading within the civil service comparable to other public sector workers.”
“Four years into office, the Bio administration has reneged on its promise to establish a Wages and Compensation Commission to address the existing wage disparities among public sector workers in Sierra Leone. Instead, civil servants, including internal auditors and teachers, who have demanded for salary harmonization have either been suspended or arrested and detained.”
We produce below the two appointment letters to help illustrate the evidence on which this highlight is based.