File picture: Philimon Bulawayo
Johannesburg - Public servants might gripe about their salaries, but according to Statistics SA, some are doing “pretty okay”.

According to Stats SA’s latest financial report, the country’s 47 national government departments spent R137 billion paying their employees during the 2015/16 fiscal year.

Three departments were the big spenders, accounting for 70% of the budget. These were the SAPS which made up 42% of the total department employee spend, defence at 18% and correctional services 10%.

The data also broke down the average that each department paid their staff. The biggest payers were the Office of the Chief Justice which last year spent R1.3billion. With 1613 employees it meant that the average annual compensation worked out to R808249 per person. According to the report, it wasn’t that the department was overly-generous when it came to paying its employees, but rather this was because of its high proportion of senior skilled staff.

Taking second spot was the Department of International Relations and Co-operation paying an average salary of R735976, followed by Parliament at R724 328 and Traditional Affairs R707 825.

Further down the list, Treasury came in 12th at R599 269 and the Presidency 30th at R454 524.

Interestingly, while the SAPS had the largest compensation bill, it ranked 44th out of 47 with salaries. Employees earn on average R298 002 a year.

The data does not indicate how compensation was distributed across employees within a department.

Saturday Star