Bulgarian Opposition Proposes Freeze of MP Wages
Bulgaria's largest opposition centrist party GERB proposed Thursday a freeze on the salaries of the Members of the Parliament.
MPs from the Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party (GERB) grounded the proposal on feeling uneasy about the pay raise and rejected accusations of populism.
It emerged Wednesday that the MPs "forgot" to vote on the freeze as they did at the beginning of last year, which automatically leads to an increase of BGN 350 of their current salaries of BGN 2200.
"Such increase on the backdrop of a minimum monthly wage of BGN 350 and retirement pensions going up in July by BGN 5 on average makes us uneasy and embarrassed," said GERB MP Dimitar Glavchev.
Deputy Speaker of the Parliament and MP from the ruling Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), Maya Manolova, told reporters that she personally supported the freeze, but stressed one should consider how it would affect people whose wages are linked with MP salaries, and the fact that under the current rule income of Bulgarians was increasing constantly and steadily.
The far-right ultranationalist Ataka stated they would support the freeze proposal.
Meanwhile, antigovernment protesters, including university students, announced that they are staging Thursday evening a rally in front of the Parliament in downtown Sofia against the MP pay raise.
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