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Ex-govs, deputies still get huge pensions

The Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Tuesday, disclosed that a draft executive bill would soon be sent to the State House of Assembly,…

The Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Tuesday, disclosed that a draft executive bill would soon be sent to the State House of Assembly, to repeal the Public Office Holder (Payment of Pension Law 2007).

It provides for payment of pension and other entitlements to former governors and their deputies.

Some of these former executives include leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, and the immediate past governor, Akinwunmi Ambode.

Sanwo-Olu who disclosed this while presenting the 2021 budget proposal to the State Assembly stressed the need to reduce cost while promoting selflessness in public service.

The governor last Friday, at the 22nd Annual Tax Conference of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN), charged other governors to look into their expenditure profile and do away with unnecessary spending so as to increase state revenue to meet the basic needs of the people.

Tinubu welcomes idea

The national leader of All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has welcomed the idea, stressing that whatever is paid to him as pension has always gone into charitable organizations for the use of the less-privileged in the society.

The media adviser to the former governor disclosed this in an exclusive chat with Daily Trust.

I’m not a beneficiary – Fashola

Fashola, on his part, said that he is not a beneficiary of the pension and other package mentioned.

“He is not a beneficiary of any package they are talking about,” said Hakeem Bello, media adviser to Fashola.

Comply with court order on ex-governors’ pension, SERAP urges Malami

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), an NGO, has called on the Attorney-General of the federation and Minister for Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN to comply with the court order directing him to challenge the legality of state pension laws and recover pensions collected by former governors and their deputies.

Kolawole Oluwadare, deputy director of SERAP, in a telephone chat with our correspondent yesterday, said: “More particularly, this is in compliance with the judgment of Honourable Oluremi Oguntoyinbo of the Federal High Court, Lagos in SERAP v. Attorney General of the Federation mandating the Attorney General to challenge the legality of state pension laws and recover pensions collected by former governors and their deputies.”

10 civilian, military governors receiving pension in Kaduna

In Kaduna, it is not clear how much ex-governors and their deputies receive as pension but a former governor of the state had in 2019 told Daily Trust that he receives a monthly pension of N741,000.

Daily Trust reports that in May 2020, the Kaduna State House of Assembly amended the Pension and Gratuity (Governor and Deputy Governor) Law 2006.

The amended law, which is now cited as the Pension and Gratuity (Governor and Deputy Governor) (Amendment) Law, No. 10 of 2020 states in section 6 that: “Notwithstanding the provision of Section 5 of this Law, in the event of the death of a serving governor or deputy governor, a lump sum amount of the gross annual salary of the incumbent governor or deputy governor shall be paid as death benefits to the family of the deceased governor or deputy governor as the case may be.”

Patrick Yakowa who was governor of the state between May 20, 2010 and December 15, 2012, had died in a helicopter crash as a sitting governor.

There are five former civilian and military governors each in Kaduna State.  The civilian governors include Alhaji Balarabe Musa, Abba Musa Rimi, Ahmed Makarfi and Namadi Sambo and Mukhtar Ramalan Yero. The living former military governors include Dangiwa Umar, Abdullahi Sarki Mukhtar, Lawal Jafaru Isa, Hammed Ali, Umar Faruk Ahmed.

The Special Adviser to Governor Nasir El-Rufai on Media and Communication, Muyiwa Adekeye did not respond to calls to confirm whether Kaduna will also abolish pension for ex-governors and their deputies.

Edo: Oyegun, Igbinedion, Oshiomhole enjoying pension

There are three former governors in Edo State, namely Chief John Oyegun, Chief Lucky Igbinedion and Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.

A government official, who spoke to Daily Trust on the condition of anonymity, said past governors are all receiving pensions.

He said the governor may also abolish it due to the prevailing circumstances but that will be decided after his swearing-in for the second tenure.

Gombe: Goje, Dankwambo receiving pension

In Gombe State, there are currently two living former governors of the state that are still receiving pensions, Senator Muhammad Danjuma Goje and Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo.

The first executive governor of the state, late Abubakar Habu Hashidu died in July 2018, 15 years after he left power.

There are also four living former deputy governors, Senator Joshua Lidani (1999-2003), John Lazarus Yoriyo (2003-2011), Tha’anda Jason Rubainu (2011-2015) and Charles Iliya (2015-2019).

The erstwhile deputy to Dankwambo, Mr David Albashi (May to November 2011) died six months into their first tenure in November 2011.

The Gombe State Executive Pension Law enacted in 2008, provides for monthly salary for life to former governors and deputy governors.

When contacted, Ismaila Uba Misilli, the spokesman for Governor Muhammad Inuwa Yahaya said the state government has not yet formed opinion over the matter.

Kano: Gaya, Kwankwaso, Shekarau, Ganduje receiving pension

In Kano State, there are four former governors namely, Senator Kabir Gaya, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, Senator Ibrahim Shekarau with the present governor, Abdullahi Ganduje who is in his second term and a beneficiary is a former deputy governor of Kwankwaso.

Both Gaya and Shekarau are serving senators.

According to Section 3(1) of the Kano State Pension Rights of Governor and Deputy Governor Law 2007, a former governor and his deputy are entitled to a monthly allowance equivalent to a basic salary of a serving governor.

A former governor is also entitled to a 6-bedroom house worth N250m at an area of his choice, while his deputy is entitled to a 4-bed room house in an area of his choice.

When contacted, the state commissioner of information, Mohammed Garba said it depends on ‎states, its lawmakers and other stakeholders to see if there is the need to abolish pension for former governors and their deputies.

Ogun: Ex-governors earn last salary as monthly entitlement

In Ogun State, no law is currently being implemented as regards pension for the former governors and their deputies, it was gathered yesterday.

But the Special Adviser to the governor on Public Communication, Remmy Hazzan told Daily Trust that the ex-governors are entitled to a monthly payment, amounting to about N700,000, which is their last salary in office.

When asked if there are plans to enact a pension law for the ex-governors, Hazzan said the state does not have the muscle for such jumbo pay.

“For us in Ogun State, we don’t have that kind of jumbo pay for former governors. Their case is not different from permanent secretaries who go home with the same salary they earn while in office,” Hazzan said.

Nasarawa: Senator Adamu, Al-Makura receiving pension

Nasarawa State has two former governors who are receiving pensions; they are Senator Abdullahi Adamu and Senator Umaru Tanko Al-Makura. Both Adamu and Al-Makura are serving senators. Ex-Governor Aliyu Akwe Doma is late.

The exact amount they are receiving could not be ascertained. But a source said that the initial pension was about N700,000 monthly including medicals and domestic staff wages inclusive before it was later reviewed upward.

When contacted, the Information Officer of Nasarawa State Pensions Board, Ibrahim Dawayya said, “Only the executive secretary could reveal the exact pension of the former governors and their deputies.”

Benue: Akume, Suswam not on pension

The former governors of Benue State are not likely to be drawing pensions from the state.

Our correspondent findings indicated that former Governors George Akume and Gabriel Suswam, who are still living are not on pension.

A state government official said it wasn’t clear whether they were being paid pension or not as he promised to find out and get back to our correspondent later.

Bayelsa: Ex-governors receive N3.66m, deputies N3.55m as monthly pension

The former governors and deputy governors pension law 2003 makes provision of N3.66m for former governors and N3.55 million for the former deputy governors of Bayelsa State.

Aside from Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, who is late, former governors of the state who are likely to benefit from the pension include, Dr Goodluck Jonathan, Chief Timipre Sylva, Chief Alfred Diete-Spiff, who was the governor of old Rivers State and Chief Seriake Dickson, the immediate past governor.

Bayelsa State Commissioner for Information, Orientation and Strategy, Ayibaina Duba could not be reached for comment.

From Abiodun Alade, Abdullateef Aliyu & Christiana T. Alabi, Lagos, Peter Moses (Abeokuta), Usman A. Bello (Benin), Haruna Gimba Yaya (Gombe), Ibraheem Hamza Muhammed (Lafia), Adelanwa Bamgboye (Lagos), Lami Sadiq (Kaduna), Hope Abah Emmanuel (Makurdi), Bassey Willie (Yenagoa), Habibu Umar Aminu (Kano)


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