Reps to get N10m each out of N18m allowances

Yakubu Dogara

A cash crunch has hit the House of Representatives, a fall-out of the dwindling financial state of the country.

The development forced the leadership of the House on Tuesday to reduce the due allowances of members.

Findings showed that each member was entitled to N18m as part of their first pay package in the Eighth Assembly to settle down for legislative duties.

However, the money included a provision for car loan, repayable before the expiration of the current tenure in 2019.

NG-gossip gathered that instead of the N18m, members would only get N10m in the interim, “pending when the financial situation of the House will improve.”

One senior official said, “Built into the N18m is furniture allowance, housing and car loan.

“But right now, only N10m can get to members. The car loan in particular is off.

“What this means is that there is no provision for car loan for now.”

Findings indicated that the Speaker of the House, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, broke the news to grumbling members during a closed-door session on Tuesday.

The closed-door, which was the first activity of the House on Tuesday, started soon after Dogara entered the chamber.

He immediately called for the closed-door, which lasted for over one hour.

At the session, he was said to have taken time to explain the financial situation of the legislature to members and why it was not possible to pay the N18m.

“The executive session dwelt on the issue of the due allowances. These are some of the allowances due to the members.

“The meeting was called to make these explanations to avoid a situation whereby people may think that they have been short-changed.

“The money is due this week and the Speaker made the point that it was important to brief them on their expectations “, another source stated.

However, when his views were sought, former House Deputy Leader, Mr. Leo Ogor, claimed that the meeting only deliberated on the lean financial state of the federal and state governments.

He said members discussed the inability of some state governments to “pay salaries for a number of months” with a view to seeking possible solutions to the problem.

“Basically, the meeting was on the issue of salaries owed state workers and all that,” he added.

But, a reliable official informed Us that Ogor used the issue of salaries in the states to “divert attention because that was only used at the meeting to cite and assemble the financial state of the country.”

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