As part of its annual budget, Treasury has published the proposed salaries for president Ramaphosa and his yet-to-be-named deputy in 2018/19 – subject to final parliamentary approval.
It also included the projected salaries that Ramaphosa can expect to earn (should he remain as president) for the 2019/20 and 2020/21 financial years.
For the coming financial year, Ramaphosa can expect to earn R3.6 million – substantially more than his predecessor Jacob Zuma who was awarded R2.9 million in the 2017/2018 budget year.
This number is projected to rise to an annual salary of R3.9 million in 2019/2020 and R4.2 million 2020/21.
The salary proposals are not without controversy, with many commentators pointing out that Ramaphosa – with an estimated net worth of over $450 million – is already one of the richest men on the African continent, and should not need such a high salary.
Others have pointed to the government’s already bloated public wage budget, and previous years’ need to freeze salaries among top officials.
Former president Jacob Zuma’s Salary had not changed since 2016, when a salary freeze was implemented across most of government’s top positions. In the latest financial year, government workers were given a salary hike in line with inflation at 5%.
At around $300,000 (at today’s rates), Ramaphosa’s salary would be among the highest in the world for presidents and country leaders (2017 figures).
Deputy president pay
Similarly, Ramaphosa’s new deputy president (who is yet to be announced) can expect to earn slightly less at R3.1 million this year. This number is projected to rise to an annual salary of R3.3 million in 2019/2020 and R3.6 million in 2020/21.
Since Ramaphosa was elected president of the country, the position of deputy president has been sitting open, with much speculation around who will take up the spot when the president presents his first cabinet reshuffle.
ANC deputy president and current premier of Mpumalanga David Mabuza has been presented as the clear choice, however, there has been speculation that Ramaphosa’s preferred deputy is current human settlements minister Lindiwe Sisulu, his running mate during the ANC elections last year.
Other names that have been floating around include current minister of science and technology, Naledi Pandor, and current speaker of the National Assembly, Baleka Mbete.