More frontbenchers have disagreed with the Independent Parliamentary Standard Authority (ipsa) decision to increase MPs salaries from £66,396 to £74,000 annually.
The latest MP to voice his disagreement to the salary increase is Danny Alexander, Treasury minister, who has said it would be “wholly inappropriate” at a time of curbs on pay in the public sector.
He urged the watchdog to reconsider, saying it must take into account public opinion as well as “the wider economic climate and the climate of people’s living standards”.
It would be “wholly inappropriate for MPs to get such a large pay rise when every other public sector worker sees their pay rises capped at 1%,” he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show.
Another frontbencher, Conservative defence secretary, Philip Hammond – who is said to have a personal fortune of about £9m – said he would not personally be accepting the pay increase, saying it was the “not the moment” to do so.
Immediately the salary increase was announced the three party leaders, Prime Minister David Cameron of the Conservative Party; Ed Milliband of the Labour Party and head of Liberal Democrats, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, all spoke in unison to condemn the pay rise.
The pay rise is not expected to come into effect until after the 2015 elections.
Although ipsa is announcing a pay rise it has also announced that certain allowances being claimed by MPs would be scrapped if the pay rise becomes implemented.
The £15 dinner allowance and claims for tea and biscuits will become a thing of the past.
There will be an increase to the amount MPs contribute to their pension schemes.
There will also be a squeeze on pensions and the resettlement grants that MPs collect when they leave Parliament.
A crackdown on claims made for running second homes has also been announced, with costs such as TV licences and contents insurance no longer being met.
The disagreement with ipsa might be nothing more than mere political gimmickry – coming less than 18 months to the next general elections – as the politicians know that the decision to raise their allowance is out of their hands, they have empowered ipsa to take decisions independent of Parliament.
A decent political gimmickry it is however. Nigerians are still waiting for the day that the country’s politicians will willingly reject a legitimate pay rise.