Pensions

The head of the pensions department to retire with £1.8m

The civil servant with the biggest pension pot in Whitehall is the mandarin responsible for making us all work longer before we can retire.

A Daily Mail investigation found Sir Robert Devereux is among the dozens of top bureaucrats sitting on pension packages of more than £1million.

The permanent secretary of the Department for Work and Pensions, who is in charge of the state pensions system, will retire with a pot worth £1.8million.

A Daily Mail investigation found Sir Robert Devereux pictured, is among the dozens of top bureaucrats sitting on pension packages of more than £1million

A Daily Mail investigation found Sir Robert Devereux pictured, is among the dozens of top bureaucrats sitting on pension packages of more than £1million

This means Sir Robert, 60, will get £85,000 a year and a lump sum of £245,000 when he leaves his job.

The news that 30 top civil servants have racked up the huge pots comes just weeks after the announcement that the state pension age will rise from 67 to 68 over two years from 2037.

The league table of the top ten pots includes only two women, raising the prospect of a sexism row similar to that which hit the BBC after its gender pay gap was revealed last month.

Last night former pensions minister Baroness Altmann said it would cost a private sector worker more than £3million to get the same package as Sir Robert on the annuities market.

The permanent secretary of the Department for Work and Pensions, who is in charge of the state pensions system, will retire with a pot worth £1.8million

The permanent secretary of the Department for Work and Pensions, who is in charge of the state pensions system, will retire with a pot worth £1.8million

The permanent secretary of the Department for Work and Pensions, who is in charge of the state pensions system, will retire with a pot worth £1.8million

 ‘Eyebrows might be raised at the fact that the man in charge of the department for pensions comes so high up the public sector list when it comes to his own pension,’ she said. ‘Taxpayers will be very interested to see they are funding these generous pension schemes. Most people would never be able to aspire to such valuable pensions.’

She added: ‘Women are poor relations in pensions. Wherever you look, women lose out – here’s another example.’

The public sector moved to career average pensions five years ago, but those ten years from retirement age – including many on the league table – were told their final salary schemes would stand.

Details of the huge pots were revealed by a Daily Mail analysis of Whitehall annual reports, but it only includes those working for central government departments.

The numbers enjoying such huge deals would be even higher if those working for quangos and the Ministry of Defence were included.

After Sir Robert, the civil servant with the next best deal is Sir Simon McDonald, permanent secretary of the Foreign Office, whose pot is £1.7million. He will get £85,000 a year plus a £245,000 lump sum.

Next comes Sir Martin Donnelly, permanent secretary at the Department for International Trade, with a £1.2million pot. He will get £80,000 a year and a £230,000 lump sum.

The highest-placed woman on the top ten list is Sue Owen, permanent secretary of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. She is in sixth position with a pot of almost £1.6million, which will amount to £70,000 a year and a £210,000 lump sum.

The country’s top civil servant, Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood, comes after her with a pot of around £1.5million, according to the Cabinet Office’s annual report from 2015/16. This is worth £75,000 a year and a lump sum of £225,000. The Cabinet Office has not yet published its 2016/17 report.

If military figures were included, the table would be topped by Gen Sir Nick Houghton, the recently departed chief of the defence staff. His pot is £3.4million, which will entitle him to almost £150,000 a year and a lump sum of £445,000, according to the 2016/17 annual report of the Ministry of Defence.

 

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