by Tolu Omoyeni
In the wake of the recession in Nigeria, Senator Dino Melaye representing Kogi west in the National Assembly called on President Buhari to sack three of his ministers who hold portfolios in the finance sector: Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun; CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele and the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma.
Senator Melaye blames these three ministers’ incompetence and incapacity for the shrinking economy and he demands that they should be “booted out”. From our point of view, Senator Melaye is a hardworking, efficient, patriotic and competent man who desires to see Nigeria progress and believes that everyone working against this should go. Don’t you just love this selfless senator?
Let’s just leave this man be and talk about something crucial. Nigerian senators’ salaries! Economic Confidential released infographics on the salaries of our lawmakers and the figures have left many Nigerians bewildered. And coming at a time when we’re shedding group tears about the recession and its effects on our daily lives…
According to the report, a senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in or out of recession earns N2.02 million per annum as BASIC salary. That’s almost 170 thousand naira monthly. Not bad for big boys. But the allowances are where the waste lies. Each senator gets 200 percent of his annual basic salary for accommodation: N4.04 million, 75 percent for vehicle maintenance: N1.5 million approximately, 25 percent for Personal Assistants: N505,000, 75 percent for domestic staff: N1.5 million, 5 percent for house maintenance: N101,000, 30 percent for entertainment and utilities: N606,000, 25 percent for wardrobe: N505,000. There are allowances for newspapers, hardship and responsibilities too. What an irony! Nigerian senators get paid for hardship that they do not face. Before we miss the point, each senator earned not less than N10 million in the last one year. There’s 109 of them, including Senator Dino Melaye.
Minimum wage remains N18,000 and an average Nigerian worker earns between N50,000 – N100,000. If a minimum wage earner saves his salary for two years, he still would not be able to afford what Senator Melaye and his colleagues get for entertainment per year. But Senator Melaye is audacious enough to point fingers at other people for tearing the economy apart. What do they say about he who has never sinned should be the first to cast a stone? *drops mic*
Your pop culture/entertainment go-to. Music head. Wallflower. I do not like to write. On a mission to decipher covfefe.