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Burmese President Thein Sein has offered to take a pay cut from his current salary of 5 million kyat (US$5,000), the amount currently approved by parliament.
The president, who is a little over halfway through his five-year term, sent the message to the parliamentary session of the upper house on Wednesday.
Although Article-3 of the Law on Salaries, Allowances and Insignias of Union-Level Persons permits the president to enjoy a 5-million-kyat salary, he has been withdrawing only 1.5 million kyat every month since he has been in office.
Upper house representative Aung Kyi Nyunt said the Bill Committee recently submitted a proposal to amend the Law on Salaries, Allowances and Insignias of Union-Level Persons.
Deputy Finance Minister Maung Maung Thein, when invited by the upper house speaker Khin Aung Myint to address the matter, said the president should not be seen as an individual but as an institution. He suggested the salary should be set at around 3 to 4 million kyat – the same amount a general manager from an average company gets paid.
“The upper house speaker also said that it would be inappropriate for the parliament to decide how much salary the president should enjoy and suggested the Minister of Finance should recommend an amount based on the country’s financial situation,” said Aung Kyi Nyunt. “Therefore the parliament will make a decision based on this.”