President Maithripala Sirisena in his discussion with railway TUs had stated that a Special Commission would be appointed to review the salaries in the entire Public Sector, not just the Railways Department, Cabinet Co-Spokesman Minister Rajitha Senaratne said yesterday.
Accordingly, the proposal made to President Sirisena by Finance and Mass Media Minister Mangala Samaraweera to appoint a Commission, which includes experts of each sector, was approved by the Cabinet on Tuesday.
Minister Senaratne told the Cabinet briefing that said the commission should be appointed immediately and added that issues relating to the salaries of Public Service would be solved through the Commission within two months.
Q: The Railway trade unions are saying the Government’s decision to establish a Commission without giving a specific solution to their issue, is a wrong decision. They are also warning another strike.
A: This is what stated by President Sirisena during the discussion with them. They had called off the work stoppage accordingly.
Q: Is it fine if Cabinet decision is not be implemented upon the rejection of the Ministers?
A: The Cabinet has taken a policy decision. However, according to that mechanism, a salary hike should be given to the other sectors of Public Service, which are of the same grading.
Q: Will there be no salary hike in the middle of the year? Has the Government decided to increase salaries only through a Budget? The Finance Minister has said so.
A: The government has not taken such a decision. Maybe he is referring to a ministerial decision.
Q: Will Railways employees wait for two months to get their issues resolved?
A: Is not it possible to wait for another two months as they stayed up until now?
Q: Will 6/2006 circular be changed in this procedure?
A: Many issues have been created due to it. The salaries of all the sectors in public service should be increased if salaries of one sector are increasing. It is very unsuccessful.
Q: Have calculations been made on the loss incurred due to strike by Railways Department? Can it be recovered?
A: It cannot be recovered in such a way. However, media has made some calculations on the loss and had published them.
Q: What will happen to the National Salaries and Cadre Commission with the establishment of this new Commission?
A: The new Commission will be appointed temporarily. (Dayana Udayangani)