Politics

Total salary of a Senator is N1.5m, Reps member N1.3m — Lawan

The Nigerian Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, has disclosed that the total salary of a senator is about 1.5 million naira and 1.3 million naira for a member House of Representatives.

According to him, the average office running cost for a senator and a member House of Representatives is N13 million and N8 million, respectively.

Lawan said this at the Distinguished Parliamentarians Lecture in Abuja on Monday.

He spoke at a lecture he tagged, “The Legislature, Legislative Mandate and The People- The Reality and The Public Perception,” organised by the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS).

He pointed out that the budget of the National Assembly since 1999 has never gone above N150 billion, which accounts for about 3% of the annual budget.

On the issue of constituency projects and zonal intervention projects, he stated that the system allows legislators to nominate projects for implementation in their constituencies but they do not implement them.

“In line with their legislative mandate, they exercise oversight over the process. Corruption in Nigeria is a complex issue.

“Though corruption in any arm of government is not acceptable and must be condemned, to, however, single out one arm of government without any hard evidence is to undermine the authority of that institution.

“The purchase of operational vehicles for members of the National Assembly has received extensive media attention,” Sen Lawan noted.

He established that if civil servants from rank of assistant director and above are entitled to official vehicles and some ministers have a convoy of cars, he doesn’t see why the allocation of a Toyota Camry and a Land Cruiser to members would be such a hideous proposition.

He further stated that the major factor that contributed to the negative perception of the legislature was political apathy, arising the school of thought that politics is a ‘dirty game’ and politicians are ‘dirty.’

He concluded by promising that the 9th Assembly would continue to improve public perception on the legislature, stating that they’re not a “rubber stamp” Assembly but they only provide a safe atmosphere for national development through cooperative and collaborative efforts with the executive.

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