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Govt. to give Rf.150, 000 for every staff laid off
No. of Civil Servants needs to be reduced to 18,000 – President
The 32,000 civil servants need to be reduced to 18,000 as a means of minimizing government expenditure and to redirect and reshape the government’s fiscal policy, President Mohamed Nasheed has said.
The President made that statement while speaking on the government’s fiscal policy at a rally organized by Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) held at Kalaafaanu School on Tuesday night.
Speaking at the rally the President said those civil servants who are made redundant will be given Rf. 150,000, lump sum, from the government budget, to help them to get back on their feet.
The President said he was fully appreciative of the difficulties civil servants would face when made redundant. However, if the number of civil servants is not reduced, the people not having any jobs would suffer greater difficulties, he said. The President also said the people would not receive the full benefit of the government’s fiscal policy unless the number of civil servants is reduced.
“The civil service needs to be transformed to an 18,000 strong force, well paid, energetic and able to work long hours; I am not talking about dismissing the amount between 32,000 and 18,000 tomorrow, our objective is find a suitable mechanisms that change the civil service to our vision by 2011, I am being very honest here, the government will have to allocate funds in the next year’s budget to provide for those made redundant, those made redundant will be given a lump sum of Rf.150,000 from the government budget , in order for him or her to make a fresh start and get back on their feet, God willing, government will afford them that opportunity, our objective , is not to cause discomfort and agony for any person” President Nasheed said.
President Nasheed further said, at present, the government’s income was not being distributed fairly or justly. He revealed that government’s income was around Rf.7 billion out of which around Rf.5 billion was spent salaries of people employed in the service of the government. As such a large part of the government earnings is spent on 32,000 or so people, he said.
“The population of Maldives is at least 350,000 people, 5 billion rufiyaa from the government earnings is spent on providing salaries of just 32,000 people, then to do every thing else we have just 2 billion rufiyaa, whether it is to provide a table for a school or to provide medication for sick person in bed or to provide a book to a student we have to make do with 2 billion rufiyaa, the question that comes to my mind is that do we let go of the rest of the people , over 300,000, in order to protect the interests of 32,000 people, are we not to consider the welfare of these thousands of people” the president said.
The President went on to say that the government wants the people to earn their livelihood in a dignified manner and to live a clean life. In this regard, he said he intends to change the government’s fiscal policy in a new direction.
“It has been our objective to provide a clean and dignified lifestyles for the people, all our policies are based on this philosophy, our aim to completely transform Maldives in to something else, we have changed the country’s political system, what we did to achieve that was huge, today, we working on changing the country’s economy and fiscal policies away from what it was in the past 30 years, to establish systems and mechanisms that will allow us to follow in the foot steps of world’s developed countries” President Nasheed expressed.
Responding to remarks of opposition MPs at the Majlis yesterday, that in the past 30 years, government never reduced salaries of employees; President said it was not his intention to do what the previous government practiced and that government of the past three decade never failed to arrest anyone ‘if they opened their mouths”.
The rally was attended by Vice President Dr. Mohamed Waheed, Foreign Minister Dr. Ahmed Shaheed, senior government officiers and senior MDP members.