A new report on the Review of Pay and Grading Structures and Conditions of Service in the Public Sector (Civil Service, Parastatal and other Statutory Bodies, Local Authorities and Rodrigues Regional Assembly) and the Private Secondary Schools will soon be published by the Pay Research Bureau (PRB). There is something very special about this forthcoming Report. It is being published three years after the publication of the last PRB report and this in line with the recommendation of the Errors, Omissions and Anomalies Committee which recommends at para 1.16 on the frequency of the Pay Review as hereunder:
“The PRB has been carrying out, since its first report published in 1982, an overall Review once every five years. This practice which has worked for the past decades has several demerits. It involves a huge financial outlay once every five years impacting negatively on the recurrent expenditure, inflation and other economic indicators.
The Committee therefore recommends that… the next Review Pay and Grading Structures and Conditions of Service in the Public Sector should be effective as from 1 January 2016.”
Another noteworthy thing about the Report is that it is being written by a new generation of officers, unlike the seven previous reports which were published by officers recruited at the time of inception of the PRB.
The officers of the new generation will, I am sure, examine, review, work out and recommend changes that are desirable and feasible regarding pay, allowances and benefits. The objective will be to foster excellence in the delivery of service in the public sector, promote training and capacity building through a competency based framework, with an Incentive Scheme to reward excellence in productivity, performance and integrity. They will also revise the pension, among other things, while giving due consideration to submissions (wish list) of the federations, unions and management.
While there are good reasons to revise and refine pay structures and allowances at three-year intervals, there are problems associated with the review (overhauling) of organisation structures, and conditions of service every three years. It takes time to implement a change in the design and gauge whether the structure is fit-for-purpose or not. In any case the PRB has for some time been making recommendations that contain mechanisms to ensure enforcement in a timely manner.
I know that the devotion and faithfulness of the staff of the PRB in discharging their duties and completing the tasks are remarkable and the 2016 PRB Report will make a positive impact on the people and the organisations.
I wish them well.
* Published in print edition on 19 February 2016