Early Slovakian retirees to get Christmas bonus
Slovakian Parliament yesterday approved a Sk1.7 billion crown package providing monetary bonuses to pensioners at Christmas with both coalition and opposition support, attracting 112 votes from the 137 members present.
The package extends the Sk1,500 to Sk2,000 gifts to people who opted for early retirement, as proposed by opposition MP and former Labour Minister Iveta Radičová (SDKÚ).
The opposition claimed that if the early retirees did not receive an equal bonus it would be discrimination under the Constitution, although Labour Minister Viera Tomanova said she had accepted the proposal because it meant only a Sk60 million rise in costs, which the budget could accommodate. In the end, Radičová’s SDKÚ party abstained from the vote because, she said, “Christmas bonuses are a haphazard measure that does nothing to solve the problems of pensioners with low incomes”.