The payments will be made in phases following an approved implementation schedule to manage the cash flow constraints by the Government.
Minister for Public Services, Westly Nukundj, has confirmed that the 3 percent pay increase has an implementation schedule that is fair and affordable and was agreed upon by the Budget Management Committee and approved by the National Executive Council in its Decision No.102/2018.
The schedule was to pay two fortnights back pay every pay day on top of the normal salary, which commenced in April 2019.
This small increase is not a permanent salary rise that will continue forever. Therefore, in pay period 21 of 2019, when the 3 percent pay rise for 2018 back pay installments ceased and normal pay resumed in pay period 22 of 2019, with a smaller pay rise increment, teachers mistook the drop in their respective pay as pay cut.
Minister Nukundj said teachers and other public servants must be reminded that the 2017 pay increase has been fully paid by the Government in 2018, while the 2018 outstanding was spread out this year, starting in pay period 9 of 2019 and ended in pay period 21.
The Department of Personnel Management is now consulting the Department of Finance to recommence the back pay component of 2019 salary scale in the next available pay.
Minister Nukundj added that unions should inform their members not to take out unnecessary finance company loans during the period of implementation as the amount are not permanent salary rise.
The scheduled installments will end in pay 16 of 2020 when the implementation is to be completed for the three-year industrial award.
Nukundj stressed that despite the challenges, all public servants must be aware that the government is still committed to fully implementing the industrial agreement.