“Six new vehicles every 3 years, One hundred percent of the basic salary of the serving governor which is N 7.7million per annul, family and the ex-governor entitled to a free healthcare, furniture allowance which is three hundred percent of their annual basic salary”
The aforementioned is the figures collected by a Former Governor in Nigeria, it comes a shocking news to realize that even after the expiration of the tenure of Governors in the country, they are still entitled to a whopping sum of money, one which is enough execute major projects in a community.
It’s highly worrying to note this ugly trend happening in a country that is financially hit, probably we do not understand the gravity of this situation. Consider the case of a state with three or more Ex-governors, think about how much these individuals are entitled to yearly as an entitlement from the state governments. These are people who served for just a duration of four years and for others who are lucky to be re-elected, the maximum years of service is eight years. Yet they are entitled to a fortune while on the other hand we have civil servants who spends 30 years in service to the government leaving with just a paltry sum, one which they struggle they get in due course. Many of them spend endless wait at the various pension offices, writing unending letters and making various pleas to get their rightful entitlements.
There’s been various call from different people, Elites and major stakeholders to the Nigerian government to take a drastic step to curbing the wastefulness which has become a major feature of the Nigerian federal outlook, while the nation’s fortune over the years has fallen drastically over the drop in crude oil price in the international market, the Nigerian Economy has also been grossly affected, yet in the midst of all these, Nigerians do have to witness a case of extreme wastefulness with National funds which are meant to be used to develop the nation and see it advance.
Most states of the Federation now gets a paltry sum for their monthly allocation from the Federal Government, yet it is from this funds which is barely enough to see it through its fiscal year that they still have to pay the exorbitant amounts it still have to pay it’s Ex-governors for their pensions.
It’s must be noted that many of this Ex – Governors at the end of their tenure as Governors move on to the Nigerian Senate to continue their political sojourn, hence in the process, they keep getting richer at the expense of the masses who has nothing to show for their existence. In cases like this, they get paid both by the state governments and by the Federal Government.
This largess is not just limited to the Ex-governors alone, but also their deputies as well, understanding this situation, we then can picture how much goes to the purses of the men in this category.
This is nothing but the situation of an unfair Society, one that is bent on making the rich, richer and the poor, poorer. If we must progress as a nation, we must move past this culture of wastefulness and blatant insensitivity to emotions. There is poverty in the land, the Federal Government of Nigeria needs to understand the sense of urgency which it needs to use to treat this stop these various loopholes through which it has continued to lose money or should I simply put, through which it has continued to waste the resources of the people.
Imagine the case of Lagos State, with four sets of Ex-governors, Alhaji Lateef Jakande, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Mr Babatunde Fashola and Mr Akinwumi Ambode, without putting into account the names of their respective Deputy Governors, we must begin to imagine how much the Lagos State Governments are using to service the payments of this entitlements.
We must also recall the case of Abdul’ziz Yari, the former Governor of Zamfara State when he wrote a letter to the incumbent Governor Bello Matawalle reminding him that the state governments should not forget the monthly payment of the sum of 10 million naira for his pension fee. That is a sum that is almost the same as the salary which he was collecting while he was the Governor.
We live in a reality where there is a wide gap between the rich and the poor in Nigeria, we live in a reality where there is a need for more community driven projects and entrepreneurial development among the youths, these sum of money if saved and well accounted for will go a long way in helping the many communities.
Accolades must be given to the Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo Olu for taking the much needed step to curbing this wastefulness, while he had made his intentions known to putting an end to this ugly trend in the country, major and important stakeholders and the Nigerian Populace must support him and ensure that there’s an abrupt end to this malady. The legislative arms if it’s as sincere at it claims must be a frontier to the advancement of this cause.
This must not just be within Lagos alone, but it must be a change which must be made to spread across the 36 states of the Federation. This change if achieved will go a long way in helping to reduce the high cost of governance in Nigeria and also it will go a long way in helping you entrench the spirit of selfless service.
Public and political Offices in Nigeria is a place to offer a pure selfless service to humanity and it must not be made to look like a place where people go to enrich themselves. We will only continue to commercialize our political Offices if we allow insane practices like this continue in Nigeria. This to a greater extends explains the reason why many individuals go great lengths to secure political Offices in Nigeria and when they get there, they discard their primary duty which is good governance and transparent leadership.