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Why Saraki Makes Public National Assembly Budget For The First Time Ever

In what can best be described as unprecedented, the National Assembly has just released its National budget.
Nigerians have continually clamored for openness in the spending and administration of the National Assembly.
Recall that several voices have called for a declaration of how much each law maker takes home on a monthly basis.

While there has been several hushed responses from the law makers, the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMFAC), has given shed some light on this, it actually is not totally clear how much each law maker actually makes every month.

President of the Senate, has publicly released the details of National Assembly’s 2018 budget.

Saraki took the step on his Twitter handle on Friday, one day after meeting with officials of tech-finance advocacy organisation, BudgIT.

He tweeted: “Dear @BudgITng:
“Find the details of the 2018 Budget of the National Assembly here: http://nass.gov.ng/document/download/10247 …

“This is in accordance with the commitment of the leadership of the 8th National Assembly to accountability and transparency. #OpenNASS.”
The Senate President

Dear @BudgITng:
Find the details of the 2018 Budget of the National Assembly here: http://nass.gov.ng/document/download/10247 …

This is in accordance with the commitment of the leadership of the 8th @NASSNigeria to accountability and transparency.

#OpenNASS
Senate Pres. @bukolasaraki has re-assured that details of NASS 2018/19 budgets would be made public.

Saraki, yesterday at a dialogue session with BudgIT on appropriation process and constituency projects, vowed that #OpenNASS is now a PERMANENT POLICY.
Since 2015, BudgIT has consistently demanded that the annual allocations of the National Assembly be made public.

On Thursday, April 11, 2019, it gave a hint that this could happen soon, tweeting: “Saraki, yesterday at a dialogue session with BudgIT on appropriation process and constituency projects vowed that making the National Assembly appropriation public is now a permanent policy.”

Dear @BudgITng:
Find the details of the 2018 Budget of the National Assembly here: https://t.co/Gbbd1vPXWF

This is in accordance with the commitment of the leadership of the 8th @NASSNigeria to accountability and transparency. #OpenNASShttps://t.co/IUVjpntfK9
— The Senate President (@SPNigeria) April 12, 2019

The Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMFAC), the body charged with responsibility of fixing renumeration package for political, public and judicial officer in Nigeria says monthly payment of N13.5m as running cost to senators is illegal.

A senator, Comrade Shehu Sani recently revealed that each lawmaker in the upper chamber of the National Assembly receive N13.5 million monthly as running cost.

According to SaharaReporters, each of the lawmaker in the House of Representatives also receive N11.5 million monthly as running cost.

Mr. Ibrahim Mohammed, RMAFC spokesman, in a statement on March 28 said that the approved monthly payment of a senator was N1.06m, and anything outside that amount is against the tenets of the Nigerian law.

RMAFC therefore disowned the jumbo payment to the lawmakers, saying the National Assembly Service Commission should be held accountable.

Mr. Mohammed explained, “The law on salaries and allowances of public office holders is very clear and as such it is only the management of the National Assembly Service Commission that can explain the N13.5m running cost allegedly being enjoyed by each senator.

While giving a breakdown of emolument a senator is entitled to as fixed by the Commission, the RMFAC spokesperson said, “A closer look at the monthly entitlement of senators reveals that each senator collects salary and allowances in the sum of N1,063,860:00 consisting of the following: basic, N168,866:70; motor vehicle fuelling and maintenance allowance, N126,650:00; personal assistant N42,216:66; domestic staff, 126,650:00; entertainment, N50,660:00; utilities, N50,660:00; newspapers/periodicals, N25, 330:00; wardrobe-N42,216,66:00; house maintenance, N8,443.33:00; and constituency, N422,166:66.

He continued “It is instructive to note that some allowances are regular while others are non-regular. Regular allowances are paid regularly with basic salary while non-regular allowances are paid as at when due.

Furniture allowance (N6,079,200:00) and severance gratuity (N6,079,200:00), for instance, are paid once in every tenure while motor vehicle loan (N8,105,600:00) is optional which the beneficiary has to offset before leaving office.

He said that it is only the national assembly that can explain the jumbo pay as it is not part of the RMAFC’s mandate.

Mr. Mohammed advised the public to seek accurate knowledge on the issue by consulting appropriate agencies rather than relying on hearsays.

Source: Sahara Reporters

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