Reps cut salaries, allowances by 30 per cent, says Egoh
A member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Oghene Emma Egoh, representing Amuwo Odofin, yesterday said that members of the House have cut down their salaries and allowances by 30 per cent.
Egoh, who stated this yesterday while featuring on the Hot Seat series organised by reporters covering the lower legislative chamber, said that the decision was in line with his colleagues’ resolve to make sacrifice in view of the current economic realities in the polity.
He also lamented the sale of the Apo Legislators’ Quarters, which serve as residences to members of the National Assembly.
He said: “That issue has been a very contentious issue. My take is let the House be very transparent. I sympathise with the common man. Prices of things are very high and when you look at the money going to members of the Senate and House of Representatives, the tendency is to think it is very high.
“Personally, I would be happy if due process is observed that across board, everybody should reduce his or her salaries. I will be happy to see the salaries reduced. At least, let members of the public be happy that we too are making the sacrifice. But don’t forget that we too, this Eighth Assembly, have reduced salaries by about 30 per cent.
“Well, it costs money to build those legislators’ quarters because in the process of building them, there would be fraud, contract would have been inflated and so when you see the bill, it is in billions of naira. If those houses were still there, I will have advocated there is no need to sell them because they have already been built but to advocate that we build new legislators’ quarters for 365 members, plus 109 for the senators, it will run into billions of naira. And in this lean economy, it is not the best.”
Egoh, who is a member of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), also faulted President Muhammadu Buhari’s approach in the on-going war against the Boko Haram insurgents.
According to him: “Let ame say first of all that the war against insurgency is a war that every Nigerian wants us to win. So, on that work, we are on the same page with the President.
“Whichever party you belong as I am of the PDP does not matter because without security, we cannot have peace, we cannot have investment, people cannot move freely and Nigerians cannot be happy. So, we want to support the President to ensure the success of that war. Let me say straight away that the President is a General, a man all of us respect, the man who should know about war more than we who are just politicians but I want to say that his strategies have not quite worked as expected.