Sixth District Representative Myron Walwayn has pointed out that some retired politicians already collected up to $10,000 per month under the controversial “Greedy Bill”, although sections of the law were finally thrashed in the House of Assembly on September 19.
Elected leaders yesterday agreed to remove offensive sections of the controversial Retiring Allowances (Legislative Services) Amendment Act, 2021 which granted lawmakers lump sum payments, gratuity and guaranteed salaries after leaving office.
But Walwyn said such a move should never have happened, pointing out that retired politicians have been collecting in the region of $10,00 per month since the law was passed in 2021.
“Can you imagine? You go by the government’s treasury every month to pick up a salary like you’re working and you’re not working. How could that be right? What could have been in the minds of persons to feel like they could take advantage of the people and the treasury like that?” Walwyn questioned.
“Just in the last sitting, we passed about $1.4 million to address this issue. Any minister who sat in the last House of Assembly is picking up $10,000. Every backbencher is going to pick up $8,000 and they’re not working. That cannot be right,” Walwyn stated.
Walwyn also stated that the VIP administration passed the law to benefit themselves, adding that they appointed more than one Deputy Minister during their time in office to make their members eligible for more money after retiring.
He called the bill a “legislative deception” saying the Fahie-administration brought one version to the House of Assembly, but later passed another version which gave politicians more money than what was initially agreed on.
“If we didn’t have the outcry about this bill, the people of the BVI would have been paying two governments at the same time — one that’s working and one that’s not working. We have got to start doing things differently,” Walwyn explained.
After Walwyn’s speech, lawmakers who helped to pass the Greedy Bill stood and rebutted the point that the bill was made to serve the VIP. They say the bill was passed in an attempt to improve the welfare of elected leaders who sometimes suffer after leaving office.
But no one explained why one version of the bill was presented to the public while a second one was later passed, which gave politicians even more money after retirement.
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