While the palestinian population is busied in surviving Covid with the official government spokesperson prose, quranic verses,and selected jokes, the PA was busy amending the bonus and retirement law for the benefit of its officials.
In the most recent sermon of the Palestinian prime minister, he told us about the difficult situation and the extent of the government’s commitment to the citizens after eight weeks of declaring a state of emergency that completely crippled the wheel of the economy, and therefore made it more difficult for the deteriorating Palestinian economic situation.
In the midst of rational measures taken by the government to “clear its responsibility” in front of the citizens, the Prime Minister announced that two working days of all government employees have been deducted from the minister to the guard. Of course, as if the one receiving a salary less than $ 500 is the same level as the one receiving a salary of more than $ 5,000.
All government employees are equal when it comes to cutting salaries!
Of course, while the government is trying its utmost to save the situation and help the citizens, the Israeli occupation has made matters even worse when it decided to “piracy” the taxes owed money to the Palestinian Authority in the amount of NIS 450 million in favor of an Israeli court decision.
While the Prime Minister insisted on the necessity of donating to the “Waqfet Ezz” fund, he presented a gift to the investor sector by exempting him through a presidential instruction from their annual registration fees.
At some point in his speech, I imagined the seriousness of his suggestion that we might enter into an intolerable bottleneck in absorbing the Israeli occupation violations of the treaties and understandings, especially after declarations of annexation of lands in the West Bank and the seizure of lands around the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron, owned by Islamic endowments. Although the news was released a month ago, it was not on the government’s agenda to denounce or object. This may result in a declaration of the dissolution of the Authority.
In conclusion, what will be left for the PA to manage if the areas B and C and the Jordan Valley are included, and the Tax clearance funds deducted, which will be reduced if the revenues of those living in areas B and C are automatically transferred to Israel, the international aid is reduced, and a clear economic collapse?
There was a lot going on while we were sleeping in our homes, busy with our livelihoods with slumber, and with the daily briefings of the government spokesperson with excitement. Between the performances of prose and the Quraanic verses and the possible jokes that comfort us and distract us from what is going on. Together with intersecting paradigms in which ministers took he platform to bring in their own shows. While we also amused ourselves in praising the “great” ministers or put them under the blades of our knives with criticism or mockery.
While the speech of the Minister of Justice in his rhetorical presentation also still buzzed in my ears, advising the public “not to take the law that seriously,” the Palestinian official newspaper, Al-Waqa’iq, was publishing a decision of a law amending the General Retirement Law No. 12 of 2020 dated 20/4/2020 in No. 166, which turned out that a decision had been published amending the Law on Remunerations and Salaries of Members of the Legislative Council, Members of the Government, and Governors No. 4 of 2020 on 3/19/2020.
Do you remember the issue of double sizing salaries of ministers that a presidential decree was issued to return and the Minister of Finance donated a “proactive”, “gracious” step by returning what was owed to him in an amount exceeding $ 80,000? The sums that we demand daily and for months as citizens to return, and no official bothers to even comment?
It seems that there really is no life but power and those who hold an everlasting position in it retroactively as well. Because in anticipation of any future deterioration, the law was amended.
Decision No. 27-2-2020, announced in the Official Gazette on 19-3-2020, and codified by No. 4 of 2020 regarding the amendment of the Law on Remuneration and Salaries of Members of the Legislative Council, Members of the Government, and Governors No. 11 of 2004 and its amendments:
Article 1: The Law on Remunerations and Salaries of Members of the Legislative Council, Members of the Government and Governors No. 11 of 2004 and its amendments, for the purposes of making this amendment, are referred to in the original law.
Article 2: A new article is added to the original law after Article 11 bearing No. 11 bis, as follows: With the exception of those whose rights are regulated by special regulations, whoever is appointed to the rank of a minister and who occupies the presidency of a public institution and those in their rank, deserves the retirement rights that the Minister deserves according to The provisions of this law, provided that their contributions and the public treasury receive their share, and the Palestinian Retirement Authority shall organize this.
As for the fourth article, it stipulates: Article 13 of the original law is amended to read as follows: 1) The president, members of the Legislative Council, the president and members of the Council of Ministers and governors may combine the retirement benefits stipulated in this law, and any other retirement benefits that are not from the public treasury or a body Palestinian retirement, or any retirement benefits from public money. 2) A family advantage is added to a national background or a sabbatical in the institutions of the Palestine Liberation Organization or its factions, for those who occupied the presidency or membership of the Council of Ministers or worked as a governor, when calculating his pension in accordance with the provisions of this law, (2%) for each year for those who were not subject to the law Previous retirement, provided that the retirement salary does not exceed the percentages specified in Articles (8 and 10) of this law, and the Palestinian Retirement Authority is responsible for calculating retirement rights.
Article 5: everything that contradicts the provisions of this decision is repealed by law.
Article 6: All competent authorities, each within its jurisdiction, shall implement the provisions of this decision by law, without prejudice to the legal centers accrued from the previous one, and it shall be enforced from the date of its issuance, and it shall be published in the Official Gazette.
While we were busy blaming the workers “for causing” the spread of the epidemic virus, and engaging in Qataeff of um Shadi and the arguments communicating with the government spokesman, the money was calculated and scheduled for a specific group that was not satisfied with what they already took from these people’s life, its best and its strength, but they are preparing to empty the remainder From material imports to their pockets.
On the day that the phrase “hang your hands out of your pocket” became known to the prime minister blaming his official spokesman, there was another decision that was drafted to inject public money into the pockets of all those in power.
Decision of Law No. 12 of 2020 amending the General Retirement Law No. 7 of 2005.
It came as follows in article number 7:
1) the service of public sector employees ends when they reach the mandatory retirement age in accordance with the law.
2) An exception to what is stated in any other legal provision, and unless the Head of State decides otherwise, the service of heads of official institutions and bodies shall continue to be of minister rank, until they reach the age of 65.
What does all this mean?
The two decisions express one phrase: “wasting public money” through control to the interest of the first level authority officials over the funds of the Palestinian Pension Fund.
According to the interpretation of the statutory: This will automatically increase the salaries of those who hold a “minister’s degree” and give them huge pensionable salaries without paying any pension benefits according to the amendment, after exempting the category of senior employees (in the rank of a minister and the like) from their pension premiums.
Accordingly, the two decisions have terrifying effects by wasting the pension fund’s money. Where the amendment came to return the financial contributions of employees who hold the degree of minister, estimated in millions of shekels, and exempt the retirement authority from paying their pensions.
According to legal analysis: This means that the pension fund will lose millions of shekels, and the flow of money to it stopped by large proportions of the deductions that were paid from this category, and that the legal amendment decided to extend their service for an additional five years after sixty. Originally, these funds are a right of employees and retirees and should not be counted in favor of a specific class itself.
What will result in this decision is to increase the burden on the public treasury so that the Ministry of Finance pays a pension for these employees who hold a minister’s degree of public money, and the ministry continues to pay their salaries without deduction for the purposes of retirement.
This will result in an increase in the salary of each of them more than three thousand shekels, and the extension of their work for the next five years, with that category retaining a retirement rate of eighty percent of the minister’s salary, and that decision constitutes a huge increase on the salary of everyone who holds the rank of minister, and that the said amendment will increase the salary Everyone who holds the rank of the Minister ranges between 3000 shekels, according to estimates, because no contributions will be deducted for the purposes of retirement, for which the government will pay the full retirement benefits. The participation allowance will be added to the salary of every employee who holds the rank of minister, as this law will apply to everyone who holds the degree of minister and what has been mentioned positions according to the law, and may include hundreds of retirees who hold the degree of minister as well, because the best law for the employee or retired will be applied to it. This will threaten the bankruptcy of the pension fund, and will increase the salary bill in a massive way, especially as the law has been published and entered into force.
This means that senior employees will get back all the amounts they paid as contributions to the retirement fund, calculated for them for any years they spent in “national work”.
And in front of that, the question remains: What is the lesson to extend an employee’s work for five years after he has passed the legal retirement age? What is the lesson of returning all pension contributions and granting him a pension from the public treasury at the expense of taxpayers?
Is what is happening is a precautionary step to secure the “high rank” officials of the authority if an emergency occurs other than the corona emergency?