By Ishola Balogun
Various groups under the aegis of Concerned Nigerians in the Diaspora have criticised members of the 8th National Assembly over what it described as ‘’huge immoral wardrobe allowance.’’
The body during a press briefing in Ikeja, Thursday, noted that in spite of the change mantra of the government even under dire economic situation when most states of the federation could not afford to pay salaries of civil servants, the lawmakers have decided to continue with the unwholesome norm of ‘business as usual’.
It was reported by most dailies that members of the National Assembly would receive N8.64 billion as wardrobe allowance which amounts to N17.5 million for each of the 360 members of the House of Representatives and N21.5million for each of the 109 Senators, apart from furniture, housing and vehicle allowances.
The body led by Olu-Alakija, a UK-based businessman stated t “It is an obnoxious, inconsiderate, insensitive and selfish move by anyone seeking to serve the public good to move for such massive pay in the light of poverty of the over 160 million people, where several state governments and even federal government are in deficit of payment of workers’ salaries; where the healthcare sector is in tatters and the education and unemployment of our youths have suffered decline for many decades.”
It therefore appealed to the lawmakers to lead by example and urgently renounce and reject the allowance.
The body which is a united front for Buhari-Osinbajo Diaspora Organisation, BODO-UK and Ireland; Hope Movement Worldwide; Buhari Friends Organisation Network in Diaspora (BFON) also called on the National Assembly to immediately set in motion the process of reviewing the jumbo salaries in conformity with the current reality of the Nigerian economy.
The group also urged President Buhari to live up to his campaign promise of ensuring fiscal responsibility, accountability and put an end to impunity in all arms of government, including the civil service.