Irwin Armstrong, NI Conservatives’ chairman, has slammed the Executive for “not getting to grips with the bonus culture” and demanded that the finance minister in particular act to address “an unacceptable cost to taxpayers”.
“When is Sammy Wilson going to stand up for fairness and for the poorly paid, rather than for well paid public servants?” Irwin asked. “After the finance minister ruled out using savings from variable civil service pay to create new jobs in Northern Ireland, it emerges that his department handed out almost £150,000 to its own employees in bonuses for 2010/11. Over all the Executive departments, the bill could come to nearly £3/4 million in a year.”
“It is outrageous that, with so many people feeling the pinch, the bonus culture among well paid civil servants continues unabated. Why isn’t the finance minister leading by example and ensuring that Executive departments, and in particular his own department, aren’t frittering away the taxpayers’ hard-earned money in this way?”
“Sammy Wilson is always quick to naysay about any measures with the potential to bring jobs and investment to Northern Ireland. Yet his department and that of his DUP colleague, Nelson McCausland, spend most on bonuses. The DUP needs to get its priorities straight and start standing up for the underpaid and unemployed, rather than simply handing out taxpayers’ money to the chosen few.”