Decrease ministers’ salary

Erika Spilhaus, Lakeside

How can anyone be expected to live on a minimum wage of R3 500 a month these days?

That is totally ridiculous and pretty much impossible – especially when it is for a family.

We all have to eat – we all have the same basic necessities, but the cost of all these things is still the same for the poor as for the rich (and middle class).

It is no wonder that there is so much stealing and crime. It is very easy for our ministers sitting in Parliament to make a rule to increase this and that.

Yes, it is easy for them – they earn huge salaries. In fact their salaries are shamefully high and just so over the top. The lowest MP in Parliament earns R86 120 per month (R1033438.00 per annum). For what? Can you believe this – it is outrageous! These are people like you and I, who are doing a day’s work. It’s nothing special – it is just a job. Worse still is, that many of them don’t even do the job properly. Now why should there be this enormous difference between the poor with nothing and the MPs with far too much?

This is just not right and I cannot believe that those who set the salaries do not have the slightest conscience when they give themselves increases whilst their fellow man is sleeping under a piece of cardboard.

I have always felt that it is better to give 10 people R50, rather than give five people R100. At least that way more people can benefit.

So here’s a thought. Why don’t we put a challenge to the ministers – All the ministers. Why don’t we take 20% off all ministers’ salaries and put it in a well guarded pool (hopefully managed by someone honest. Are there still honest people around?). Taking 20% off the lowest earning MP (R17 200) will mean he will then earn R68 800 per month. Do I hear “tut – tut – shame”?

Can you imagine the enormous amount of money which would be made available? Especially considering that most of the MP salaries are higher than the one I quote. Now I suggest we start “schools of industry”.

I wonder why apprenticeships and teaching colleges were dropped? We need practical people in our world. Not everyone can, should or needs to go to university. It is the practical man/woman who can almost always guarantee some kind of a job.”Going to Uni” is a cliche – the trend, which once again the taxpayer has to pay for. And then after uni – then what? You might have a degree, but if your roof blows off, can you fix

Let’s use this “excess minister money” to teach the people to help themselves. Pay them a small wage to start off, and let them work together to make food gardens to feed their own families; build Ecobrick houses; sew (by hand if necessary) clothes for kids from remnant material donations; knit blankets, make a plan to remove disease carrying refuse; learn basic hygiene and teach the adults and the children to clean up their environment.

Start building pride again. I’m sure it has been started before, but I don’t think with the “Minister’s regular Donations”. Any ministers willing to take up the challenge?

So many people have no skills, but
sadly that is often because the parents and the grandparents who are supposed to be passing on the skills – are not around. They live elsewhere or are working.

Life is different in the Western world and so the skills needed to survive also become different. To be able to become self-sufficient and help yourself is a huge asset and a massive form of pride for any family.