The executive is not in favour of making the salaries of all members of the judiciary tax-free, Attorney General Anil Nandlall says.
Nandlall made the position known in written responses to questions asked in the National Assembly by APNU MP Basil Williams, where he noted that the executive and the judiciary are currently in talks about the revision of salaries and emoluments.
Williams questioned whether the government did not consider the restriction of tax-free salaries to only the Chancellor and the Chief Justice to be discriminatory against the majority of members of the judiciary.
According to Nandlall’s responses, which were circulated at Thursday’s sitting of the National Assembly, there has always been a differential between the emoluments of both the Chancellor and the Chief Justice and other judges because of the administrative which they hold, including their duties as ex-officio members of the Judicial Service Com-mission.
He also points out that the current emoluments were negotiated by the then Chancellor Desiree Bernard and accepted by former President Bharrat Jagdeo.
“Government is not inclined to grant tax-free salaries to all members of the judiciary,” Nandlall further states, in reply to the question of whether the government would make the salaries for all members of the judiciary tax-free.
Williams also asked when the salaries and emoluments of members of the judiciary were last revised and whether there were plans to do so once more before the end of the year.
The last major revision, according to Nandlall, was done in 2008 and since then percentage increases given to public officers have also been given to members of the judiciary. He also disclosed that the executive and the judiciary are in discussion on a revision.