The 52 Members of Parliament (MPs) who served in the 10th Legislature from 2012 to 2015 have had their gratuity payments cleared.
The total gratuity payout and benefits of all 52 MPs including the 14 jailed politicians who served as MPs in this period amounts to Vt290,059,075.
However, some of the MPs did not receive their full gratuity payments because they did not complete the 4-year term of the 10th Legislature.
Financial Controller in the Parliamentary Secretariat, Willie Watson, confirmed to the Daily Post yesterday afternoon that the jailed politicians have also received their gratuity payout,which took into account the time they served the people of Vanuatu up to the time before their conviction as this is their right as MPs.
The new MPs who secured seats during the 2016 snap general elections will have to wait until the end of the current 11th Legislature before they can receive their gratuity, prior to the end of the life of the current parliament in 2020 and subject to the relevant governing laws of the country on parliamentary elections.
The Daily Post understands that the 2012 -2015 MPs four year term gratuity payout was met under the Supplementary Appropriation in 2016 under section 34 of the Public Finance and Economic Management ACT (CAP 244). However, the Parliamentary Financial Controller said the gratuity pay-out was made at the end of 2015 as is the normal practice.
Each MP is entitled to Vt4 million at the end of the four year parliamentary term and this figure has remained the same over the past years, according to Mr. Watson.