Salaries & Pensions

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has cheered up its government employees and pensioners by announcing a raise in salaries and pensions. This was a much-needed respite in such difficult circumstances. It is an open secret that salaries and pensions in Pakistan do not correspond to the crushing weight of inflation and the private sector pays much more to its employees. This also becomes the root cause of inefficiency and corruption in the government sector. With lower salaries, employees are far less motivated to deliver their best and keep lamenting about not being paid enough for their labour.

Having powerful government officials work for pittances, while comparable private sector executives earn millions, is a recipe for corruption. If our government employees are economically secure, the incentive to engage in bribery, fraud, and corruption, is significantly reduced. Half of the problems that the general public faces which we attach to incompetency in the government sector stem from low salaries.

Following suit, salaries and pensions for government officials need to be significantly raised across the country. KP has taken the start and other provincial governments as well as the federal government must acknowledge the need for this move. The government sector seems stuck in the last decade when we compare the standard fixed salaries with the quick rise in the inflation graph.

This is a good time to review the existing salaries and pensions and the government must come up with good news as it goes on to present the budget. Simultaneously, work culture in the government sector must also be revamped, and strict checks and balances should be in place to grab those who indulge in malpractices habitually. It is on the government to create incentives and it is also on the government to punish when performance is not at par with the incentive.

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