THE Salaries and Remuneration Commission is the only body empowered under the Constitution to determine the levels of benefits for elected leaders at the national, provincial and local government levels.
It also determines the benefits for judiciary members, constitutional officer holders, department heads and heads of statutory authorities.
According to the SRC Determinations of 2015 currently in place, “no other body or individual has this authority (to determine benefits)”.
“Once a decision on a particular benefit is made, the SRC then reports it to the Parliament in the form of a recommendation for the Parliament’s consideration,” it says.
“The Parliament may accept or reject, but it may not amend or alter a SRC recommendation. All SRC decisions have immediate effect, unless otherwise set aside by the Parliament.
“The SRC, since its establishment in 1988, has made some 23 determinations which cover the only authorised benefits that Members of Parliament may legally receive during their term in Parliament.
“Members of Parliament are, therefore, urged to familiarise themselves with the SRC Determinations so that they do not get themselves into trouble for receiving or asking for an unauthorised benefit.”
The SRC is established under Section 216A of the Constitution.
The act also provides for the establishment, within the parliamentary service, of a secretariat for the commission.
The six members of the SRC are the:
- Speaker of Parliament or his nominee as chairman;
- prime minister or his nominee as a member;
- chief justice or his nominee as a member;
- opposition leader or his nominee as a member;
- secretary for the Department of Personnel Management or his nominee as a member; and,
- Secretary for Department of Labour or his nominee as a member.