Governor Rejects Life Pension For Bayelsa Assembly Members
Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa state has declined assent to the controversial bill passed by the state house of assembly members, seeking life pension for themselves.
The house passed a bill that would grant life pensions to speakers, deputy speakers and members.
Under the bill, which was proposed by Peter Akpe, leader of the house, former speakers will go home with N500,000 monthly, while ex-deputy speakers will receive N200,000. Twenty-four other former members are also expected to get N100,000 monthly.
The house also wants life pensions for members similar to those “applicable to former presidents, vice-presidents, governors and deputy governors across the country.”
But Daniel Iworiso-Markson, commissioner for information, said the governor had conveyed his decision to decline assent to the bill in a letter to the speaker of the state’s house of assembly on Monday.
Dickson, it was learnt, held consultations with the assembly members in his country home of Toru-Orua, where he explained his reason for declining assent to the bill.
He said the bill was inconsistent with section 124 of the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria as amended. The governor also argued that the state assembly lacked the powers to expand the categories of public servants who should be entitled to pension.
Dickson noted that there were lot of challenges facing the state and that if allowed to become law, Bayelsa would be the only state out of Nigeria’s 36 states to come up with such legislation.
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