In a move apparently aimed at bolstering the country’s judiciary, benefit packages for judges, judicial assistants, and Qatari members of the public prosecution have been increased to 120 percent of their salaries by Emiri decree, QNA reports.
Previously, all staffers received allowances totaling some 60 percent of their monthly wages. The increase, stipulated on Wednesday by the Emiri decisions number 80 and 81 of 2013, will presumably apply to housing, education, travel and other allotments given to employees.
Speaking to Al Raya, Qatar’s justice minister hailed the move, saying the Emir was strengthening the rule of law by shoring up the independence of the nation’s judiciary.
Abdul Rahman Jufairi, a local lawyer, added that the increase was necessary because judges and prosecutors are not allowed to engage in any business other than the judiciary.
Another lawyer told the Arabic-language newspaper that the boost would “increase the psychological comfort” of prosecutors, reducing the “pressures of life” and allowing them to focus more squarely on the cases at hand.
Finally, the increase will ideally motivate more Qataris to enter the country’s legal system, which is seeing a huge backlog as Qatar’s population has doubled in the past six years.
Enormous wage and benefit increases are nothing new in Qatar. In 2011, while he was still Heir Apparent and Deputy Emir, Sheikh Tamim raised salaries for all nationals in the public sector by 60 percent. Military personnel saw a hike of 120 percent.
Many companies in the private sector quickly followed suit, raising the salaries of locals to “promote the welfare of all Qatari citizens.”
Meanwhile, expats have complained that the increases in their pay have not kept pace with the rising cost of living here.
Credit: Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Justice on Facebook