Wednesday, October 20, 2004

General Wealth

Hogging the headlines lately are stories of how military generals amassed wealth while in office and lived happily ever after.

Many are asking how generals with a salary of just over 30T can build houses and send their children abroad to study. My question is why on earth is a general receiving only that salary with all the responsibilities that he has. The unit chiefs of the GOCCs receive more than that. And they are only supervising at most only a dozen people.

I used to think that my younger brother who supervises 500 or so employees in a multinational firm at the Mactan Export Processing Zone was highly paid. Compared to what supervisors are getting at GOCCs I now feel he is underpaid.

But a major general getting 37T; he is terribly underpaid. And I can commiserate with the frustration he faces, the envy he must wrestle with, knowing that others in government are having it too good. I wouldn't want to be in his shoes.

What is interesting is that there seems to be two groups of people asking how a low-salaried person can be so wealthy. The first are those who are receiving low salaries but also have unexplained sources of income to maintain their lifestyles. The second are those whose compensation are way above what many others are receiving for performing basically the same functions.

The rest, and that includes me, can only sigh. :-(