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Local government officials to get 5% pay hike

A 5% increase has been approved for local government officials in 278 municipalities, which will cost around R90-million in state funds, the Sunday Times reports.

Executive mayors of the country's eight metropolitan municipalities, who all earned above R1-million per annum, would also get pay hikes.

The determination of salary increases was published by Co-operative Governance Minister Lechesa Tsenoli last week.

The salary increases for councillors include insurance in case they are attacked during a riot or outbreak of public disorder.

This followed the R45-million increase for ministers, premiers and high ranking MPs approved by President Jacob Zuma this year, despite a recommendation that all public office bearers earning above R1-million not get increases.

Chairpersons of committees at the country's smallest municipalities will get a minimum annual salary of R439 546. Members of mayoral committees in the biggest councils will get a maximum of R883 158.

'Very well compensated'
The recommendation was made by the Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers.

Municipal IQ, a web-based data service that monitors the performance of the country's municipalities, said the high salaries of councillors showed why these positions were highly sought after.

"Full-time councillors are being very well compensated," managing director Kevin Allan was quoted as saying.

"In those councils, which have experienced multiple protests … one could really question what value a council is receiving for such significant salaries." – Sapa

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