Pay lip service?

Do you know why the government has published the pay commission’s proposal? I don’t.

The pay commission’s proposal is already outdated – the ministry of finance’s proposal being based on it. So why not publish the MOF proposal? In fact, why not publish whichever proposal the government has approved?

Article 30.3 of our Constitution, “The recommendation of the (Pay) Commission shall be implemented only on the approval of the Lhengye Zhungtshog and subject to such conditions and modifications as may be made by Parliament”, can be interpreted in at least two ways:

One, that the government has the authority to approve and implement pay revisions. That parliament’s approval to do so is not necessary. But that the parliament could, if it so chooses, discuss the pay revision before or after it is implemented.

Two, that the government can approve a pay revision, but that it must go through parliament before it is implemented (which is to say, the government cannot really approve pay revision).

I favour the first interpretation. After all, if we hold the government responsible for its performance, then we must give it the authority to perform as it deems fit.

But regardless of the interpretation, pay revision will be discussed by the national assembly on 19th January. So this must mean that the government has already approved some version of the pay revision proposals.

Now the PM has been quoted as saying that he released the pay commission’s full report to “…allow lawmakers to receive public opinion before debating on the pay issue.” I take this to mean that the government has approved the pay commission’s report in full. And that this report will be discussed in the national assembly

But it seems that the government is still unsure – according to Kuensel, the ministry of finance’s proposal is being discussed even now, and the cabinet has not yet reached a decision.

So which “pay revision” will the parliament discuss? I don’t know.

And why has the government published the pay commission’s proposal? I really don’t know.


Facebook Comments:


  1. Thanks for the clarification. When i read about the pay hike proposal on kuensel, i though it was more or less approved since it said that it would be amended by July 2009, but i guess there will be further discussion on it. Anyways the scale is outrageous (of course the decision maker would be happy) considering the fact that its only 40-50% for the jobs at lower end and more than 150% for jobs at higher end. It’s ridiculous if people don’t say anything about this.

  2. I am a civil servant in higher P level and am quite satisfied with the proposed amount in the salary revision. But, I will certainly feel discomfort in taking home the first revised pay when i know that the civil servants under me are still bewildered as to how will they manage to run the house comfortably. How are we going to ever save for our children's education, any emergencies and a place to call your own home to retire ? When the revised salaries are not enough to give you the bare basics of everyday life even in the first half year since revsion then it becomes difficult to the average civil servant to aspire to lead a model life serving as model to be emulated ? The majorities of the Bhutanese civil servants may have to follow Gandhian philosophy to living.

    The government made a mistake by announcing a pay revision and dragging on its feet to finalise it. Ever since that time we have seen a constant upward revision of the prices of goods, house rents and et all.

    There are many flaws in the pay commission's proposals. The most glaring is the great difference between the salaries of the politicians vs civil servant. It is also the fact that the lower rung civil servants who have been hit hardest by the inflation is set to get the lowest % of raise. I expect that the Hon'ble MPs will not forget their less than a yaer ago's slogan of equity and justice on which plank they were able to garner over 65% votes. EQUITY & JUSTICE is what they should eat drink dream and ACT.

Leave a Reply