The nation’s political officeholders’ salary structure has been revised, according to the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission, and implementation is expected to kick off soon.
The RMAFC claims that, given the current economic difficulties facing the nation, raising the salaries of those who occupy political power in the nation is important.
Additionally, it was stated that paying them more would aid in reducing or preventing corruption because well-paid public officials wouldn’t divert funds from the government.
These were revealed by the RMAFC Federal Commissioner in Charge of Gombe State, Kabiru Usman, in a press conference shortly after paying Governor Bala Mohammed a courtesy call on Thursday at the Government House in Bauchi.
He asserted that as the Commission is authorized by law to establish the salaries of the nation’s political officeholders and judicial employees, raising their pay will help them fulfill their assigned duties.
Usman, however, said that although their pay had been reviewed, they were still “studying the situation for the time being.”
He responded, “You see, political office holders are human beings, they are also public workers, and they go to the same markets with everyone,” when asked if the RMAFC would raise the salaries of political office holders in light of the Nigeria Labour Congress’s demand for wage increases for workers.
“The Commission, under paragraph 32b, is empowered to determine the salaries of political officeholders and judicial workers in the country. So, we have undertaken work on it, we have revised it, but we are looking at the situation for now. What we are doing is not to allow somebody to have a very fat salary; whatever we are paying, there are certain principles that we look upon before we increase that salary.
“Apart from the cost of living index, initially, the former salary that we had when a bag of rice was sold, maybe N200 or N300; now the same bag of rice is over N50,000, so you see how things have changed. The cost of utilities, gas, electricity, and telephone—is going astronomically high, so because of that, you have to review.
“If you say you’ll just pay a Governor N5,000 for the cost of a telephone, how many hours does the governor need to talk in a day? If you say that I am a Minister and that you are giving me only a bag of rice in my house, is that adequate? Will it cater to my people? So, we are also looking at the responsibilities attached to that office.
“When you have a commissioner who is your classmate, your friend, or your neighbor, you all go to him when you have a problem. So, assuming his salary is also N30,000 like your own, would you go to him?”
In his remarks, the governor of Bauchi, Governor Bala Mohammed, thanked the RMAFC for its efforts in catering for the welfare of Political officeholders and asserted that “what is good for the goose is good for the gander.”
“Our political party holders too are entitled to get a salary increase, and they have done it; it is being ratified.
“I am a labor-friendly governor, and I wouldn’t mind if these salaries are increased because Bauchi is one state that is paying the minimum wage with consequential adjustment, because as a civil servant who grew through the system of public service, I knew where the shoe pinch,” He said.