Another raise – of 200% — in Duty Allowance for government ministers, sources report

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OPM Photo: CABINET OF ANTIGUA MEETING LAST WEEK

Backdated Payments and Unannounced Increases: Inside the Browne Administration’s Salary Controversy

Source: Real News Antigua- Ministers in the Browne Administration have been awarded an increase in their Duty Allowance, as of January 1, 2023, taking their payment from $1,000 to $3,000 a month, reliable sources have alleged to REAL News.

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Accordingly, all eight Cabinet ministers – Gaston Browne, Maria Browne, E.P. ChetGreene, Charles “Max” Fernandez, Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin, Molwyn Joseph, MelfordNicholas, and Darryl Matthew – will receive $24,000, each, to cover the Allowance forlast year, 2023.

This hike follows their controversial salary increase of 14 percent – which ourNewsroom broke last Friday, April 5 – which was backdated to last January, as well.The sums in back-pay ranged from $19,000-plus for the prime minister to $6,000-plusfor the senators who serve as ministers of state.

Again, there was no word of this increase in Duty Allowance in this week’s CabinetNotes or in the post-Cabinet press briefing.

Ironically, the sources tell REAL News, despite Prime Minister Browne’s claim that theincrease in Opposition Members’ salaries had been delayed by a “glitch” in informationrelayed from the Parliament, no instructions to pay them has been sent to the Treasury,to date.

Today, April 12, on an outing on Observer Radio, Opposition Leader Jamale Pringledescribed Browne’s comments on the 14 percent increase to government ministers asuntruths.

He noted that the 2024 Budget Estimates record the same amounts in annual salariesfor parliamentarians as were recorded since 1994, proving that no increase this year –and none for last year – had been authorized.

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