by Dare Lawal
Nigeria’s speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, on Thursday made a spirited defence of the extraordinary pay which legislators in the country receive from the federal treasury. Tambuwal said that the pay – believed to be the largest in the world – is entirely justified because of the responsibilities in the office of a Nigerian legislator.
Nigerians have consistently maintained that public office in the country has become too attractive as a result of the huge salaries and allowances but legislators do not even bother to release the full details of the monies they are being paid by Nigerian taxpayers, making the thought of reducing it farfetched.
Meanwhile in Ghana, on the same day Tambuwal was justifying his huge pay, the federal executive cabinet of that country announced that in order to “demonstrate leadership,” the president John Mahama, his Vice, Kwasi Amissah-Arthur and all ministers in government will take a 10 per cent pay cut in 2014.
This was revealed by the Minister for Finance, Mr Seth Terkper during the presentation of the 2014 budget.
“In the spirit of the partnership, His Excellency President John Dramani Mahama, His Vice President, Ministers and appointees have decided to take a voluntary 10 per cent pay cut for 2014,” he said .
Terkper disclosed that the amount which would be deducted by the Controller and Accountant General would be deposited in a special fund dedicated to maternal and neonatal health.
“The amount to be deducted will be paid into a fund to be dedicated to a special purpose (Community Health Programmes and Service) CHPS compounds, to focus on maternal and neonatal health,” he stated.
He also said the real GDP growth for Ghana in 2013 is 7.4% compared to 2012 which was 7.9%.
According to Terkper, the president is working to enhance transparent governance.
He said, consistent with the medium term objective, government is targeting a growth rate of 8 per cent for the year.