Secretary-General for Department of Health receives €81,000 salary increase 3 months ago

Secretary-General for Department of Health receives €81,000 salary increase

His salary is now €294,920 a year.

Secretary General for the Department of Health Robert Watt has received an €81,000 salary increase.

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Speaking to JOE, the Department of Health confirmed that Watt was receiving higher pay, but did not elaborate on when he received the increase.

"The Secretary General has confirmed that he is in receipt of the full salary for his role," the Department said.

"Further details are personal and private in respect of the individual concerned.

"The Department has no further comment."

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Watt is now in receipt of a salary worth €294,920 a year.

He had previously been offered the increase in April of 2021, but chose to waive the increase.

The Secretary General did so until until such time as "the economy recovers and unemployment falls".

Watt said in April: “I was delighted to be asked to take on the role of Interim Secretary General in the Department of Health earlier this year.

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"An open TLAC competition was held and I am pleased to be asked to take on this role on a permanent basis following the Government meeting today.

“The proposed salary for this role is higher than my current salary.

"I don’t think it is appropriate to take such an increase in pay given the current difficult economic conditions the country faces.

"It had always been my intention that, if I were to be appointed to this role, I would waive this increase until the economy begins to recover and unemployment falls."

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In November of 2021, the Finance Committee published a report stating that the manner in which the salary increase was conducted "damaged public trust and eroded confidence in the system of public administration".

"The lack of transparency and accountability involved and the impact on public confidence and trust is a source of serious concern to the Committee," the Finance Committee published.