As the controversy about Nigerian senators’ pay continues to fester, the chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), has said he would release details of how much the principal officers in the Senate and House of Representatives earn.
It would be recalled that the senator representing Kaduna Central Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Mr. Shehu Sani had said recently that his colleagues receive N700, 000 monthly and a separate N13.5 million as running costs.
Sagay who was reacting to Sani’s revelation described as a “tip of the iceberg” the N13.5 million allowances being received by senators saying Nigerians will be shocked when he releases details of the allowances of the principal officers of the National Assembly.
He said the principal officers of the National Assembly, including the senate president, deputy senate president, speaker, deputy speaker and the majority and minority leaders of both chambers, are receiving far more than what Sani revealed.
“There are many things the press doesn’t know yet. If you come to know the allowances that the leadership of the two houses is getting… my God, it will blow up the country. What is the senate president getting? It is not the ordinary N13 million.
“What does he get as senate president? What is the leader of the House getting, what is the deputy leader of the House getting? What is the deputy senate president getting? What are the minority leaders getting in both houses? Go and find out. It is an explosive stuff, I tell you. Eventually, I will come out with the figures. I am working on them now. When I am ready, I will come out with them.”
The PACAC chairman lashed out at the spokesman for the senate, Senator Abdullahi Sabi, for saying that the N13.5 million allowances was already in the public domain.
Sagay said it was hypocritical of the lawmakers to have berated him last year when he released details of their allowances.
“What they released then was their salaries which the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) approved for them. What they are hiding now are the allowances they voted for themselves.
“The salary details released was just about N700, 000 but what they voted for themselves is about 20 times that amount. That is the whole point and they were hiding it.
“I came out with the figures last year and they wanted to cut off my neck and now it has come out in the open…but you were denying it in the past. So, they have a guilty conscience because they know what they are doing is shameful,” he added.