“More than two years into a four-year tenure, only 175 members have been supplied the cars. Others are still paying from their pockets to work and the suffering continues. Members are tired and they can no longer keep calm. It was learned that the hiccups were caused by what the House later discovered to be ‘Peugeot’s lack of capacity’ to deliver the cars because of the huge number”
This was the last we heard from an official at the House of Representatives after lawmakers began to rant over the late delivery of their “utility vehicles”. They have consistently complained about the two-year long delay in getting the cars over but this was not their first contention over the car issue.
Last year, the honourables expressed dissatisfaction over the choice of car. Members of the upper chamber had gotten Toyota Land Cruiser Prado jeeps but the honourables were to get “ordinary” and in their sight, “classless” Peugeot 508 cars.
In July, the lawmakers went to the length of calling for the sack of Mr. Nasiru Baballe-Ila, the Chairman, Committee on House Services who they claim forced the Peugeot cars on the rest of them. Will we ever know why Baballe-Ila insisted on the brand? That’s one question for another time.
The recent development is that 200 cars have finally been delivered to the lawmakers and we hear they are excited. House Spokesman, Abdulrazaq Namdas said, “Over 200 have been supplied out of 360, and we are still getting more. Every member will get their car by the end of this year.”
Reports have it that each vehicle costs N17 million and 360 cars total at N6.1 billion. But hold up, the lawmakers claim they have not received their salaries for the month of July. A member of the House, Mr. Johnson Agbonayinma who spoke to Punch regarding the salaries said, “I don’t know what else to say. We are suffering. Nigerians are suffering. The National Assembly is treated with levity; they don’t take our case seriously.”
And this is the point where it gets confusing. Nigerian lawmakers are yet to receive salaries for a month that ended only a week ago and that already counts as suffering? They have become like the rest of us now? Can one ever sufficiently understand how things work in the brains of these representatives?