The Kataeb parliamentary bloc on Tuesday submitted a draft law suggesting that the lawmakers' lifelong salaries would be cut off, in accordance with the party's repeated calls for austerity.
Speaking at a news conference in the Parliament, Kataeb leader Samy Gemayel said that the presented draft suggests that a lawmaker would get 75% of his salary during a period of only one year after his mandate ends; he would stop getting anything after that period.
Gemayel explained that the one year period is aimed at giving the outgoing lawmaker some time to restore his professional life and to reintegrate in the labor market.
The Kataeb chief elaborated that Australian MPs receive a full salary for a three-month period after the end of their term, same as in France where the pay period is only six months.
“The draft law takes into consideration death and martyrdom,” he noted.
Gemayel stressed that such a move would be the first step towards austerity, adding that it is time to enforce measures that would help ending squandering and reducing unnecessary spending.
"What is important is to ease the burden weighing on the state treasury,” Gemayel affirmed.
"This proposal would help save LBP 29 billion ($19.3 million) per year. This amount is more than the double of the Industry Ministry's budget," he pointed out.
“We are open to all amendment suggestions over this topic. As we are aware that other similar draft laws have been proposed, we are ready to engage in discussions so as to reach a middle ground."
Turning to the government formation, Gemayel deplored the ongoing procrastination, deeming the current stalemate as "shameful".
“It is a shame that the government formation bottleneck is not based on divergences over projects or the vision for the future of Lebanon, but rather over shares and personal interests," he said.
“We will deal with the new government based on its performance. If it is good, then we will support the government. If not, then we will continue to say the truth as we have always done. It is important to have free voices that speak up the truth and don't favor their personal interests over the country's welfare."