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Backlash forces ministers to cut salaries by 10pc just days after passing €16k rise for super junior colleagues

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Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Minister for Enterprise Leo Varadkar. Photo: Stephen Collins /Collins Photos Dublin

Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Minister for Enterprise Leo Varadkar. Photo: Stephen Collins /Collins Photos Dublin

Taoiseach Micheal Martin and Minister for Enterprise Leo Varadkar. Photo: Stephen Collins /Collins Photos Dublin

TAOISEACH Micheál Martin has announced that government ministers are taking a 10pc pay cut. Mr Martin made the announcement after a Cabinet meeting today.

It comes amid huge controversy over €16,000 salary top-ups for ‘super-junior’ ministers.

Mr Martin said that he along with all senior and junior ministers are taking the 10pc cut.

Ministers will also not accept the 2pc pay increase due in October under the Public Services Stability Agreement

This comes as teachers, childcare workers and doctors unions have reacted furiously to the €16,288 super junior ministers' pay hike while workers suffer a salary "inequality" in the pandemic.

The top-up pay for super juniors, who already earn €124,000, has caused huge anger among thousands of workers who are on different salary scales to their colleagues following pay cuts introduced during the last recession.

Yesterday, Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe said he understood the "great annoyance and anger" over the Cabinet's decision to sign off on the pay increase for three super junior ministers.

Mr Donohoe said that while he could "absolutely understand the anger that this is causing for some", the decision should be "placed in the context" of a number of measures announced under the Government's stimulus plan last week.

The minister's comments come after the Dáil on Friday voted for legislation for the ministerial salary of three junior ministers that sit at Cabinet to increase by €16,288.

Fianna Fáil's Jack Chambers and Fine Gael's Hildegarde Naughton will now get €151,000 annually, while Green Party Senator Pippa Hackett, a junior minister in the Department of Agriculture, will receive €123,186.

More to follow...

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