Sanwo-Olu moves to stop Tinubu, other ex-govs, deputies' pensions – Newstrends
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Sanwo-Olu moves to stop Tinubu, other ex-govs, deputies’ pensions

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Former governors and deputies including Bola Tinubu, Babatunde Fashola and Akinwunmi Ambode, may no longer enjoy pensions if plans to repeal the Public Office Holder (Payment of Pension Law 2007) sail through.

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, gave the hint on Tuesday when he announced his intention to repeal the Public Office Holder (Payment of Pension Law 2007), which provides for payment of pension and other entitlements to former elected governors and their deputies.

The governor made this known on Tuesday while presenting the 2021 budget to the Lagos State House of Assembly.

He said the bill for that purpose would be sent to the state assembly.

“Mr. Speaker and Honourable members of the house, in the light of keeping the costs of governance low and to signal selflessness in public service, we will be sending a draft executive bill to the House imminently for the repeal of the Public Office Holder (Payment of Pension Law 2007), which provides for payment of pension and other entitlements to former governors and their deputies,” Sanwo-Olu said.

According to the Lagos Pension Law approved by former Governor Bola Tinubu in 2007, a former governor will enjoy the following benefits for life: Two houses, one in Lagos and another in Abuja; even as property experts estimate such a house in Lagos to cost about N500 million and that in Abuja to cost about N700 million.

Other entitlements include: Six brand new cars, replaceable every three years; furniture allowance of 300 per cent of annual salary to be paid every two years; and a pension of N2.5 million monthly amounting to about N30 million pension annually.

The former governor will also enjoy security details, free medicals including for his immediate families.

Other benefits are house maintenance worth 10 per cent of his annual pension; 30 per cent car maintenance; 10 per cent entertainment; 20 per cent utility, and several domestic staff.

Should the new arrangement succeed in Lagos, it would only be following a similar step taken by the Kwara State in 2018 when the state House of Assembly passed an amendment bill halting payment of pensions to former governors, deputy governors, and other political office holders after their tenure.

Former governors and their deputies from almost in all the 36 states of the federation enjoy similar jumbo pay.

A recent report by Blueprint newspaper catalogues a number of states where such largesse in the name of pensions for political office holders after leaving office is ‘legitimised’.

For instance, the report states in Rivers State, the law provides 100 per cent of annual basic salary for ex-governor and deputy; one residential house for former governor to be located anywhere of his choice in Nigeria; one residential house anywhere in Rivers state for the deputy; three cars for the ex-governor every four years; and two cars for the deputy every four years.

Furniture allowance for the governor is 300 per cent of annual basic salary every four years en bloc; as well as 10 per cent as house maintenance allowance.

In Akwa Ibom, the law provides for N200 million annual pension to ex governors and deputies. They enjoy a pension, for life, equivalent to the salary of the incumbent governor and deputy governor respectively.

Similarly, they are entitled to new official car and utility vehicle every four years; one personal aide and provision of adequate security; a cook; chauffeurs and security guards for the governor at a sum not exceeding N5 million per month and N2.5 million for the deputy governor.

There is also free medical service for governor and his spouse at an amount not exceeding N100 million for the governor per annum and N50 million for the deputy governor.

Also, there is a five-bedroom mansion in Abuja and Akwa Ibom and allowance of 300 per cent of annual basic salary for the deputy governor.

The ex-governor also takes a furniture allowance of 300 per cent of annual basic salary every four years in addition to severance gratuity.

The Kano State Pension Rights of Governor and Deputy Governor Law 2007 provides for 100 per cent of annual basic salaries for former governors and their deputies, with a furnished office as well as a six-bedroom house, ‘well-furnished’ four-bedroom for deputy, plus an office.

The former governor is also entitled to free medical service along with his immediate families within and outside Nigeria where necessary. It is same for deputy.

Two drivers are also part of the former governor’s entitlement and a driver for his deputy; and personal staff below the rank of a Principal Administrative Officer and a PA not below grade level 10. There is a provision for a 30-day vacation within and outside Nigeria.

In Gombe, there is N300 million executive pension benefits for the ex-governor.

The Zamfara version of the law, signed in 2006, gives former governors pension for life; two personal staff; two vehicles replaceable every four years; two drivers; free medicals for the former governors and deputies as well as their immediate families in Nigeria or abroad.

The law also gives the former governors a four-bedroom house in Zamfara and an office, free telephone and 30 days paid vacation outside Nigeria.

In Sokoto, former governors and deputy governors are to receive N200 million and N180 million respectively, being monetisation for other entitlements which include domestic aides; residence and vehicles; that could be renewed after every four years.

Section 2 (2) of the Sokoto State Grant of Pension, Governor and Deputy Governor, Law, 2013, states that “the total annual pension to be paid to the governor and deputy governor, shall be at a rate equivalent to the annual total salary of the incumbent governor or deputy governor of the state respectively.”

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Apprehension as passengers train derails in Kaduna

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JUST-IN: Abuja-Kaduna train terails, passengers stranded

A passenger train on Sunday derailed at Jere along the popular Abuja-Kaduna route, leaving the travellers stranded in the mountainous area.

The train was said to have left Kaduna at 8.05am heading for Abuja but developed fault about an hour later and stopped at Jere.

It was not immediately clear how many passengers were inside the train.

It was however learnt that more armed security personnel had been mobilised to the area in addition to those on the train to allay the fears of the passengers and their family members.

Senator Shehu Sani, in an alert raised on his verified X handle, stated, “A Kaduna morning train derails near Jere but engineers are attending to it.”

Workers of the Nigerian Railway Corporation have been drafted to the spot to repair the train, with about three carriages off the tracks.

Security personnel, including soldiers and police officers, are also on the spoke to keep watch over the passengers and the train.

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Lanre Shittu Motors to roll out high-tech CNG buses next month

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Lanre Shittu Motors to roll out high-tech CNG buses next month

Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Lanre Shittu Motors Ltd, Taiwo Shittu, says the company will next month (June) roll out Compressed Natural Gas-powered buses across the country to ease public transportation.

According to him, the move is fallout of the Presidential CNG initiative (Pi-CNG), as part of palliative intervention of the Bola Tinubu administration to provide succour for the masses after fuel subsidy removal.

The LSM MD who spoke recently from Havard Business School, expressed delight at a number of measures taken by the current government towards rejuvenating the various auto assembly plants in the country with specific attention to CNG buses to boost public transportation.

Following a presidential directive that CNG buses must be a priority and preferred mode of transport by the various ministries, departments and agencies, he said the government had shown its determination to encourage the local auto assembly plants.

Taiwo Shittu said during the telephone interview that by June 2024, Lanre Shittu Motors would be deploying large units of the LSM branded CNG buses in airports across the country and for other mass transportation needs.

He disclosed that LSM mulled the idea of CNG vehicles and saw it as the future of the local automotive industry many years ago because of the abundance of natural gas in the country as well as the economic benefits of CNG buses to both operators and commuters.

Taiwo Shittu assured that there are plans to start assembling LSM-branded CNG buses in Lagos using the best technology like in other parts or the world.

Apart from assembling CNG vehicles from start to finish at the LSM plant, he said the company has enough kits capable of converting petroI-powered automobiles to the CNG vehicles.

He assured prospective customers of quality after-sale maintenance of any stock rolled out from the LSM assembly plant.

For over 40 years., LSM through the visionary founder and chairman, Late Alhaji Lanre Shittu, has carved an enviable niche within the automotive industry through its quality products and services.

Taiwo Shittu said introducing the LSM-branded buses was one of the many ways of immortalising him.

He said, “We have taken proactive steps in the past years to offer quality training to our technicians at various stages, levels and categories of auto assembly and after-sale maintenance services.

“Upon graduation and certification, the technicians are also deployed not only in the various LSM offices nationwide, they are also being sought after by other industry stakeholders within the nation’s automotive value chain.”

The management of Lanre Shittu Motors says that all branches of the company are currently fully equipped with state-of-the-art CNG conversion equipment while orders have been activated and running seamlessly.

Meanwhile, the first set of CNG vehicles will be inaugurated during the present administration’s first anniversary on May 29, 2024.

The Federal Government allocated N100 billion from the N500 billion palliative budget to purchase 5,500 CNG vehicles (buses and tricycles), 100 electric buses, and over 20,000 CNG conversion kits.

This funding also supports the expansion of CNG refilling and electric charging stations.

 

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Naira falls to N1,515/$ on parallel market

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Naira falls to N1,515/$ on parallel market

The Naira yesterday depreciated in the parallel market to N1,515 per dollar from N1,495 per dollar on Wednesday.

Similarly, the Naira depreciated to N1,485.66 per dollar in the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Market, NAFEM
Data from FMDQ showed that the indicative exchange rate for NAFEM rose to N1,485.66 per dollar from N1,462.59 per dollar on Wednesday, indicating N23.07 depreciation for the naira.
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The market recorded an intraday high of N1,510 per dollar and an intraday low of N1,401 per dollar, resulting in a bearing of N109 per dollar.

The volume of dollars traded (turnover) increased by 35.7 percent to $167.55 million from $123.45 million on Wednesday.
Consequently, the margin between the parallel market and NAFEM rates narrowed to N29.34 per dollar from N33.59 per dollar on Wednesday.

Naira falls to N1,515/$ on parallel market

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