States Should Amend Their Laws To Stop Former Governors From Collecting Pensions - Saraki
In Nigeria, former governors still keep their eyes on the cookie jar long after they have stopped being governors.
They want new houses every now and then. They want pension running into hundreds of millions of naira. They want cars and body guards as long as they live.
But Nigeria’s senate president, Bukola Saraki who was also a former governor in Kwara state said the onus lies on state assemblies to amend their laws to stop their former governors from receiving pension, especially those who had gone ahead to get another job.
Saraki said he has stopped receiving pensions upon becoming a senator.
Saraki, who said this at a Forum in Abuja, noted that he wrote a letter to the Kwara state government to stop the payment of the pension.
According to Saraki, the move was sequel to complaints from some quarters that former governors who are currently senators or ministers were receiving pension and salary in their new jobs, all from the government.
A civil society organisation, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), had championed this, accusing the former governors of receiving double pay from government, and pointing out that it was illegal.
“No, I’m not collecting pension; the moment I saw that allegation, I wrote to my state to stop my pension.
“So, I speak for myself on that part; I’m not doing that, I am not receiving pension from my state,’’ Saraki said.
On other senators involved on the issue, Saraki said “I think I will leave everybody to their individual decision.
“Morally, if you have got another job, you should give it up until when you are truly a pensioner.
“Some of these oversights are not addressing the issues. What the states should do is to go and amend their laws to say that if you have another appointment then you are not entitled to that benefit.“With this, we will just simplify the matter"