President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that the deputy president, members of cabinet, and he, himself will all take a pay cut as part of a contribution to South Africa’s fight against the coronavirus.
Ramaphosa said that these members of the executive will all take a 33% pay cut over the next three months. The president said that this money will be donated to the established Solidarity Fund.
In a government gazette published at the end of February, Ramaphosa confirmed that a number of senior officials including the deputy president and ministers would not be receiving an increase this year.
The official salaries are outlined below.
|Deputy President||R2 825 470|
|Minister||R2 401 633|
|Deputy Minister||R1 977 795|
Split over a year, a minister’s salary works out to just over R200,000 a month. A 33% reduction works out to R134,000 a month (a cut of R66,000) – meaning for the three months, each minister will be contributing R198,000 to the fund.
The announcement comes after Ramaphosa extended South Africa’s national lockdown by another two weeks, beyond the original 21 days. Most of the initial lockdown measures will remain in place until the end of April, said the president.
“We are only at the beginning of a monumental struggle,” said Ramaphosa. “If we end the lockdown too soon, we risk a resurgence of the disease.”
He added that risk-adjusted measures will be assessed to ensure certain businesses can return to operation. “We did not take this decision lightly,” said Ramaphosa.
The priority for the government is to ensure there is not a massive loss of life, while at the same time not allowing the economy to collapse.
This will see healthcare efforts ramped up, along with financial packages for local businesses.