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Matekane to trim ministers to 15

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MASERU– SAM Matekane is trimming the Cabinet to only 15 ministers, including the Prime Minister and his deputy, partners in the coalition government confirmed last night.

This means that the new coalition government made up of the Revolution for Prosperity (RFP), Alliance of Democrats (AD), and the Movement for Economic Change (MEC) will only have 13 ministers.

thepost understands that a task team has since been formed to work on merging some of the ministries to ensure a lean team.

The coalition government says this will be done to cut government expenditure.

The MEC spokesperson, Liteboho Kompi, said the ministries that are going to be merged are those which have similar policies.

“The team has to see to it that the ministerial positions are trimmed to be 15 or less,” Kompi said.

“The task is still continuing and has not been completed,” she said yesterday.

The downsizing of the ministries is going to include the ministries that are going to be headed by the Prime Minister and his deputy.

The Matekane-led government will do away with the position of deputy minister.

Last night the RFP deputy spokesperson, Thabo Maretlane, also confirmed that the new government had “decided to trim down the Cabinet to have 13 ministries only”.

“We are going to have 13 ministers and Prime Minister and his deputy,” Maretlane said.

“So all in all, there would be 15 people in His Majesty’s Cabinet”.

The out-going government had 26 ministers in all.

A government minister earns a gross salary of around M39 000 a month.

Their take-home pay is around M38 000.

If the ministries could be trimmed down to 15, the government could save as much as M570 000 per month.

And over the year M6.8 million could be saved.

Each minister has about eight people employed directly under him or her, including two drivers, a private secretary, ministerial secretary, personal aide, cook, constituency secretary and a gardener.

A minister is also allocated two vehicles for his ministerial errands.

All these people earn their salaries from the government payroll.

This means more expenses could be cut off if the cabinet is trimmed.

The new government is destined to cut the expenditure so that the money could be saved and used for developmental projects, Maretlane said.

Maretlane said Matekane has vowed not to use his salary for his own benefit but he is going to use it for other developmental projects in the country.

Majara Molupe

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