Application about pay rise refused

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JUSTICE David Canning says there is no evidence that the Salaries and Conditions Monitoring Committee (SCMC) had authorised for public services and other public authorities’ salaries to be increased in 2021 and 2022.
Justice Canning said questions on public servants’ salaries were determined by the making of certain public service regulations or through SCMC’s power under the SCMC Act.
He said this at the Waigani National Court on Friday when refusing an application by the National Judicial Staff Service (NJSS) to summon Finance secretary Dr Ken Ngangan to court to explain why their salaries had not increased since last year as decided by the Judicial Council in 2017.
“It is unlawful to implement such an increase without lawful authority,” Justice Canning said.
“There must be some underlying legal obligation and evidence that Ngangan is in breach of that obligation before the court can properly and lawfully make the order sought.”
Justice Cannings said although Ngangan was under a general obligation, through the Constitution, to facilitate proper performance of functions of all constitutional institutions, including the National and Supreme Court, there was insufficient evidence that he had failed to perform it.
“I find that Ngangan was under no specific legal obligation to implement any decision or recommendation of the Judicial Council and therefore, could not be summoned,” the judge said.
Justice Cannings said he was not convinced that the document NJSS provided as an evidence to show that the Judicial Council had made a decision to increase their salaries was actually not a decision.
“There is no evidence there was a Judicial Council meeting on Feb 18, 2020, as no minutes of any meeting was produced,” he said.
“I am in no position to properly decide that the alleged Judicial Council’s decision was lawful and cannot make a decision.”

One thought on “Application about pay rise refused

  • All public service salaries to be increased to cater for inflation currently faced. Cut down the tax as well, it is killing all public servants.
    Monitory needs and obligations is diverting focus to effectively perform daily.
    Accommodation and transport allowances to be added to salaries for all public servants as rentals are un regulated.
    These are the human resources to develop the country, and their needs have to appropriately addressed for them to effectively perform duties.
    New government formed after election should address salaries and accommodation issues faced by all public servants in the country.

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