Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena detailed the recent salary hikes of those employed at the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL).

Responding to a question raised by Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB) MP S. M. Marikkar in Parliament this morning (06 March), the Premier provided a detailed explanation of the amounts and percentages by which the salaries were increased by for each position within the CBSL, emphasisng that these facts were made easily accessible to the public.

Recent media reports revealed that the CBSL had increased the salaries of its employees by 70% and the move was heavily criticized by parliamentarians of both the ruling party and the opposition, following which the CBSL officials were summoned before the Cabinet, party leaders’ meeting and the Committee on Public Finance (COPF).

On 25 February, the CBSL requested the President, in his capacity as the Minister of Finance, for an opportunity to apprise the Members of Parliament, through an appropriate Parliamentary Committee, of the recent salary increment which came under fire. The request was made in writing by CBSL Governor Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe.

Issuing a release in this regard, the CBSL had explained that the latest revision of remuneration of its employees had been approved by the Governing Board under the triennial Collective Agreement entered into with the Trade Unions covering the period 2024 – 2026.

When summoned before the meeting of party leaders and Committee on Public Finance (COPF) held 05 March, CBSL governor Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe defended the move, saying that the salaries need to be increased as the country recovers from the economic crisis.

Drawing criticism from the MPs about the unethical aspect and the insensitivity of the move, the CBSL governor said the expenses for the salary increase would be drawn from the central bank fund, not from the consolidated fund.

However, the MPs pointed out that the approval of the parliament which is responsible for public finances is required for such salary hikes, adding that an additional Rs. 232 million will have to be spent monthly on this. The central bank officials were thus urged to revise the move.

source adaderana