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The scrutiny of the 2018 budget by the National Assembly, has if anything, brought to the fore the unequal remuneration of board members of the various government agencies.

This was particularly revealing Monday when the budget of the Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) was being scrutinized. The Assembly passed the budget allocation of R 109 million for 2018. But that was after it was disclosed that the chairperson was earning an allowance of R 14,000 monthly, followed by the vice-chairperson with R 12,500 and the ten other board members each taking R 9,000.
The corporation’s newly appointed CEO, Berard Dupres told the Assembly that this was in line with what board members of the Electoral Commission (EC) were earning.
It was pointed out to him by MNA Chantal Ghislain that EC members were constitutional appointees, which is not the case for the SBC.
It is a known fact that EC board members work long hours, especially before and during elections. It is not uncommon for them to work virtually round the clock.
Finance Principal Secretary Patrick Payet, informed the Assembly that the corporation board members’ remuneration should be between R3,000 and R 3,800, depending on the post occupied.  The SBC is not the only one exaggerating in paying its board members, who often meet just once a month.
It is obvious from the budget deliberations that some individuals view the government agencies as lucrative sources of a second income.
The allowances vary from one department or agency to the next.
In several instances, the board members help themselves to a fair chunk of the allocations.
The Ministry of Finance must move to ensure that the system is not being abused. After all, it is public funds, we are concerned with. Unfortunately, the Assembly members, besides Ms Ghislain did not seem concerned, while it is their duty to be so.