Opposition Leader Mark Golding on Tuesday responded to Prime Minister Andrew Holness’ announcement that he will be giving up his massive salary increase under the controversial compensation review that has seen members of the political directorate receive huge pay hikes, by more than 200 per cent in some instances.
Following public outcry, Holness announced at a press conference Tuesday evening that he will forego his salary increase that would have seen his pay balloon to $28.6 million in April 2024.
However, Golding has dismissed Holness’ move as merely an attempt “to try and take pressure off himself”, questioning whether the prime minister even has the authority to exclude his office from the pay hike.
“He was feeling the pressure and belatedly tried to take pressure off himself. I don’t know how he can give an instruction that he is not to be paid when the Cabinet has already made a determination as to what the salary levels are, including for the prime minister,” Golding said, adding “I am not sure where his authority to do that lies.”
Last Friday, Opposition Leader Mark Golding announced that he would be giving up 80 per cent of his 240 per cent salary increase that would have seen his pay jump to more than $25 million by next April, to charitable causes.
“I have no power to stop them putting that money in my salary but I have indicated from last week that I am not comfortable with it without these issues being resolved, and I intend to do what I have announced,” Golding said.
In the meantime, Golding repeated his call for the appointment of an independent panel to review the salaries of ministers and members of parliament.