The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, (SERAP) has called on Mr Abdullahi Adamu Candido, chairman of the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), to “urgently withdraw and revoke the bill/edict for the unconstitutional and illegal payment of life pensions to former chairmen, vice-chairmen, speakers and other officials of AMAC.”
In the letter dated October11, 2019 and signed by SERAP deputy director, Kolawole Oluwadare, the organisation said that if the bill/edict is not withdrawn within 14 days, SERAP will take appropriate legal actions to challenge it.
Under the bill/edict, AMAC’s past council chairmen would receive an annual pension of N500,000; former vice chairmen are to receive N300,000 each while former speakers will be paid N200,000 each.
According to SERAP, the payment of life pensions to AMAC’s officials undermines the very concept of representative government, as ‘‘it is a flagrant violation of the Nigerian Constitution of 1999 (as amended) and the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission Act. It amounts to an abuse of official power, position and resources for personal gains, and reverses the notion of government as public’s servant and not its master’’.