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Where does it pay to be a politician?

Ryan Hahn's picture

Apparently, the answer is Kenya. According to an article in

Members of Parliament each receive total monthly salary, allowances and benefits of Sh 1,435,846. This is an average figure. Some MPs may get more, some may get less. Considering it is mostly tax free, this equates to monthly remuneration in excess of Sh 2,000,000.

The Sh 2,000,000 figure amounts to roughly USD25,000 per month. I don't think I'd be going out on a limb to say that it would be difficult to attain that kind of income in Kenya's private sector.

Update: Chris Blattman makes some interesting points about the potential upside of paying politicians well.  


“…And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born…”. President Barack Obama spoke with characteristic candour, as he addressed America and the world: “…To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict...To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.” A year ago in January 2008, after the flawed election results, Kenya missed its rendezvous with history and violence erupted for three long months. After eventful negotiations, the MPs began earning the aforementioned salaries. Now that they are well paid, they should focus on applying at the local level some of the policies being proposed by the Obama administration to rebuild America’s infrastructure, education, and health-care systems etc. They had better start facilitating Kenya’s prospects (albeit in the midst of a global financial crisis) of achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

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