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Friday, April 23, 2021

Law scrapping pensions for Lagos ex-Govs suffers delay

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The proposed law seeking to stop pensions and benefits for ex-governors has yet to be passed nearly two months after Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, announced plans to do so.

Lagos state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu
Lagos state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu

While the Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotsho, says the bill seeking to scrap the Public Office Holder (Payment of Pension Law 2007), has been sent to the House of Assembly, multiple lawmakers who spoke to newsmen said the bill had not come up for mention and they were thus not aware of its existence.

Newsmen reports that Sanwo-Olu had told the House while presenting the 2021 budget proposal on November 10, 2020, that he would send a bill to the House that will ensure that pensions for ex-governors are scrapped so as to reduce the cost of governance.

The House, however, passed the state budget last week and it was signed by Governor Sanwo-Olu on December 31, 2020.

Speaking with newsmen, a member of the House said there was no mention of the bill, adding that some provisions for the upkeep of some former political office holders were also included in the budget.

Another lawmaker who wished to remain anonymous said they had not seen the bill, adding that they would have passed it if it had been submitted because it didn’t require much legislative work.

On whether funds were voted for ex-governors in the new budget, he said lawmakers had never voted funds for ex-governors and their deputies but sitting governors usually approve funds for them based on discretion.

But the information commissioner said the bill scrapping the pension had already been sent to the Assembly.

Omotosho said the bill was sent two weeks after Sanwo-Olu promised to scrap the pension, adding that no provisions were made for the former governors and their deputies in the new budget.

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