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Gov’t renews provincial government consultant’s $71k fortnightly after-tax salary

THE Government has renewed the contract of an overseas consultant engaged to provide technical assistance to the Provincial Governance Strengthening Programme at an after tax salary of $71,000 a fortnight, documents obtained by Island Sun shows.

The six-month extension will cost taxpayers some $776,160 in fixed daily professional fee as well as a daily subsistence allowance of $271,500, according to the contract documents.

Momodou Lamin Sawaneh’s contract extension was approved by the Public Service Commission last December. It is effective from January 1 this year, according to the documents.

“I am pleased to inform you that following the recommendation of your responsible officer, the Public Service Commission in its 62nd/2016 meeting held on the 29th November 2016 has approved the extension of your contract PGSP Programme Management Expert of Government and Institutional Strengthening with effect from the 1st January 2017 to the 30th of June 2017.

“Your terms and conditions of service remain unchanged as per reflected on the individual Consultancy Contract (International) and financed under the Solomon Islands Government (SIG),” according to the Public Service Ministry’s letter dated December 13, 2016.

The letter was signed by a Ms Jennifer Manusalo on behalf of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Public Service.

Article 5 of the contract says: “In accordance with the content of the terms of reference, the Contract Price shall be for an initial period (1st January 2017 – 30th June 2017) 181 days) with a total SBD1, 078, 260 including taxation on fees as broken down below:

  1. A fixed daily professional fee rate of SBD5, 880 (including taxation) for the period of 132 working days (1st January 2017 – 30th June 2017) for the duration of the contract amounting to SBD776, 160 (fully taxable);
  1. Daily subsistence allowance of SBD1, 500 including taxation 181 days amounting to $271, 500.”

The contract also provides for a return air ticket for holidays, but did not specify whether or not travel is by economy or business class, leaving the potential for a business class travel claim.

All government contracts usually specify class of travels for its consultants. There also is no mention of accommodation or who bears the cost.

Mr Sawaneh, who could not be reached for comment last night, is believed to be from Africa.

How he got to get the post in the first place remains a mystery as insiders said the consultancy was never put on tender for other interested parties to bid for the contract.

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