why is everybody so interested to know how much we earn- nigeria senate.

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The Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and
Public Affairs, Senator Aliyu Abdullahi, has
lamented the constant harassment of the Senate
by Nigerians, adding that the upper legislative
chamber cannot disclose its salaries and
allowances.
Abdullahi said this during a live programme on
Channels Television titled, ‘Politics Today.’
The Senate spokesman also refused to state how
much the lawmakers earned in salary and
allowances.
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When asked to say how much he earned,
Abdullahi said it was rude of the presenter to ask
him how much each senator earned.
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Abdulahi said, “You don’t expect me to come out
on national television to say this is what I earn. It
is not done. I cannot ask you as a journalist how
much you earn. It is not done.
“If anybody is interested in how much we are
getting paid, you know where to get the
information. The documents are available. If
Nigerians won’t believe that, is it what I will say
that they will believe?”
The Senate spokesman said the figures released
by the Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee
Against Corruption, Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), were
false, adding that the Senate’s budget was not
even as high as what Sagay released.
He said Sagay was only trying to cause
unnecessary tension between the National
Assembly and the Presidency.
When confronted with the figures exclusively
obtained by Channels Television which put the
salary and allowances of each senator at N14m
per month and House of Representatives
members as N8m per month, Abdullahi said he
could not confirm or deny the figures.
Abdullahi said the cost of democracy was not as
high as the cost of not having democracy and
Nigerians should look on the bright side.
He added, “This issue has become a recurring
decimal. In the last two years people have been
discussing this matter and I always ask myself,
what do people really want to believe? I think if
this subject matter has been discussed for two
years and we are still looking at issues wrongly,
then I think there is something wrong with us.
“The institutions that are responsible for providing
this information are there. A law was promulgated
on Top Salary Scale also known as TOPSA and it
is based on this scale that everyone who holds
one political office or the other gets paid.
“I want to also submit that I presume Prof. Sagay
would have been paid based on the provision of
this scale. For us in the National Assembly, the
question needs to be asked ‘what is the cost of
having democracy and what is the cost of not
having democracy?’”
Sagay (SAN), had said last week that a Nigerian
senator earns N29m per month.
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“From the information I have gathered, a Nigerian
senator earns about N29m a month and over
N3bn a year,” the professor said.
He added, “Basic salary N2,484,245.50; hardship
allowance, 1,242, 122.70; constituency allowance
N4, 968, 509.00; furniture allowance N7, 452,
736.50; newspaper allowance N1, 242, 122.70.
“Wardrobe allowance N621,061.37; recess
allowance N248, 424.55; accommodation
4,968,509.00; utilities N828,081.83; domestic
staff N1,863,184.12; entertainment N828,081.83;
personal assistant N621,061.37; vehicle
maintenance allowance N1,863,184.12; leave
allowance N248,424.55; severance gratuity N7,
425,736.50; and motor vehicle allowance N9,
936,982.00.”