Benue Assembly Repeals Life Pension Law For Former Govs, Deputies

The Benue State House of Assembly on Monday repealed the law for lifetime maintenance of former elected State Governors and their Deputies.

The 9th Assembly had in May 2023, few days to their exit, passed the controversial pension bill to extend benefits to ex-elected governors and their deputies from 1999.

Former Speaker of the 9th Assembly, Titus Uba, had led the plenary which earlier passed the bill to law after it was presented on the floor by the then chairman, House Committee on Business and Rules, Geoffrey Agbatse.

The bill had stipulated conditions of the law to include, payment of monthly stipend as basic pensions for former governors and their deputies, equivalent to the current salaries of the serving governor, from the consolidated revenue of the state.

“A monthly stipend equivalent to the Basic salary of a serving/incumbent Governor in the State for life and which shall be a charge on the Consolidated Revenue Funds of the State

“The Deputy Governor shall enjoy a monthly stipend equivalent to the Basic salary of an incumbent Deputy Governor for life and shall be charge on the Consolidated Revenue Funds of the State.

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“A maintenance allowance of N25,000,000.00 (Twentyfive Million Naira) for the former Governor and the Deputy Governor N15,000,000.00 (Fifteen Million Naira) every four (4) years.”

It also offers the procurement of two official SUVs of the status of the former governor and one official car for the deputy governor while the state government is mandated to avail a former governor with six personal staff, one personal assistant, two drivers, two cleaners and one cook.”

A former Deputy Governor, according to the law, will enjoy three personal staff, one personal assistant, one driver and one cleaner. There will also be provision of security, yearly medical expenses, replacement of vehicles every four years with new ones of same quality and status.

However, the current 10th Assembly during plenary, repealed the bill passed into law by their predecessors on account that it was not done in good faith.

According to the lawmakers, the law was anti-people and they were unanimous in support of the repeal after several contributions from members of the House.

Aondona Dajoh, Speaker of the House, therefore ruled in favour of “Bill for a law to repeal provision for the maintenance of former elected governors of the state and their deputies and for other matters connected thereto 2024.”