The Palestinian Authority-appointed Governor of the West Bank city of Nablus has said that he had to borrow $250,000 from his employer because his $3,500 monthly salary is not enough for him to live on, Quds Press reported on Sunday. "My salary is NIS12,000 [roughly $3,500] and I borrowed $250,000 to buy a house and a car," explained Akram Al-Rajoub in a recorded interview.
When asked whether this was enough for him to live on, he said: "This does not last until the end of the month. [He swears] I am suffering a very difficult situation."
Commenting on the video, Quds Press said that this shows that PA officials in the occupied West Bank are receiving relatively high salaries. PA employees in the Gaza Strip, however, receive only half of their salaries.
Before he gave this interview, Al-Rajoub appeared in a video that went viral on YouTube, in which he pledged to punish people in the West Bank who demonstrate against the PA's punitive measures imposed on the Palestinians in Gaza.
Quds Press also reported that the official Spokesman of the PA Security Services in the West Bank, Adnan Al-Dameer, has revealed that he receives NIS11,000 a month, in addition to a car and other benefits. This, he also insisted, is not enough for him to live on.
Figures from the Wafa, the official Palestinian news and information website, show that unemployment in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip in 2017 stood at 18.1 per cent and 43.6 per cent respectively. The figure for those in Gaza aged 15 to 29 is more than 60 per cent. For those Palestinians fortunate to be in work, the average daily rate of pay last year was NIS101.5 ($29) in the West Bank, and just NIS59.4 ($14) in Gaza.