President Maithripala Sirisena yesterday chaired the first meeting of the Special Presidential Commission to review Public Sector Salaries at the Presidential Secretariat.
During this meeting appointment letters to the members of the Commission were presented and the future plans of the Commission were reviewed, the President’s Media Unit said in a statement.
The President appointed this Special Commission to make recommendations to provide solutions to minimize salary anomalies in the Public Service while focusing on the existing salary circulars in relation to the salaries and allowances of the Public Service. President Sirisena proclaimed the establishment of this Special Commission, according to a decision taken at the Cabinet on 14 August. The Commission is chaired by S. Ranugge and H.G. Sumanasinghe is the Secretary to the Commission. The other members of the Commission are; K. L. L. Wijeratne, T.P. Collure, C.P. Siriwardene, Sudharma Karunaratne, Janaka Sugathadasa, Dharani S. Wijethilake, Lalith R.de Silva, G.S. Edirisinghe, A.R. Deshapriya, B.P.P.S. Abeygunarathne, Dr. Palitha Abeykoon, P. Thangamayil, S.D. Jayakody and M.C. Wickramasekara.
The duties and regulations of the Special Salaries Commission include, paying attention to the regulations of the current circular regarding the salaries and the allowances of the government service, and proposing a systematic approach to solve the issues emerging when providing the proposed salary scale to the Sri Lanka Railway Department.
It will also evaluate supervisory management service, proposing solutions to reduce if any anomalies had taken place in the current circular of the salary scales of the Railway Service, Health, Higher Education and Postal Services which appealed to increase the salaries and allowance, to provide recommendations to reduce variations of the salary scales emerged in the island-wide services and the services in which the salaries were increased recently and to identify anomalies in salary structure in order to reduce variations of the salary and allowances obtained by the employees holding similar responsibilities or holding similar qualifications working in governmental and semi –governmental institutions.
President Maithripala Sirisena instructed that the recommendations of the Commission should be provided before 30 October. The President pointed out that through the recommendations it will be possible to obtain guidance for composing the future budget plans.
President Sirisena said that clearing the salary contradictions of the public sector is a long term issue and that he has faith on the new Commission to provide systematic solutions to solve the problem in the future.
President Sirisena offered his well wishes to the members of the Commission.
Secretary to the President Udaya R. Seneviratne and Secretaries of Ministries and officers were present at this event.
Railway unions call off strike
By Skandha Gunasekara
The railway unions, yesterday, decided to call off their planned strike action following a discussion with President Maithripala Sirisena.
According to union sources, President Sirisena had requested the railway unions to hold off on any union action for the next two months so that salary anomalies could be rectified.
The railway unions had planned an island-wide strike action for tomorrow, accusing authorities of failing to meet their demands and fulfil the promises made.
They had made several demands, including the demand for a 12% salary increase to all 12,000 railway employees.
The unions charged that the increment had been made only to a few railway employees based on favouritism, and that it had been withheld for the majority of employees since 2004.
Union sources revealed that the discussions they had held with the recently appointed Salary Commission had been unsuccessful.