Enugu Assembly under fire over bill to pay pension to former Govs, Deputy

An alleged attempt by the Enugu Assembly to pass a law to pay pension to former Governors, Deputies and their spouses has drawn the anger of the people.

The news of the bill passing through the first reading had flooded the social media Sunday eliciting negative reactions and comments from residents.

The bill said to be sponsored by the Leader of the House Ikechukwu Ezeugwu has been condemned from different quarters.

A body, Save Enugu Group has already Issued a 21-Day Ultimatum to Enugu Assembly to Kill the Ex-governors’ Pension Bill

The group, in a statement signed by its national coordinator, Chief Willy Ezugwu, said the bill which has passed first reading must be killed immediately by the state lawmakers for the peace and tranquility in the state’s political arena to be sustained.

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SEG said it’s already mobilising “conscious citizens, civil society groups and labour unions in the state to shut down Enugu State House of Assembly for as long as it will take to kill this most insensitive bill.”

According to the group, “it will be a betrayal of the trust the people bestowed in their representatives serving as lawmakers for the state Assembly to think of passing such outdated bill.

“It is shocking that while a state, with high internally generated revenue that runs into billions monthly, like Lagos has abolished pensions for former governors, the Enugu State House of Assembly is planning to deplete the meager IGR generated in Enugu State on account of pensions for political office holders.

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“It’s more disheartening to discover that the proposed law is an executive bill.

“More worrisome is the provision in the bill for medical allowance not exceeding N12 million per annum for one surviving spouse of a former Governor, “provided that such spouse was married to the governor while in office”.

“What is more unfortunate in the bill is the provision seeking to mandate the state government to provide three vehicles for the ex-governor and replace them every four years.

“Also insulting is the provisions that when a former governor or former deputy governor dies, the state government should make adequate arrangement and bear the financial responsibility for his burial.

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“ And that the state government should pay a condolence allowance of a sum equivalent to the annual basic salary of the incumbent to his next of kin.

Also. a youth group say it’s mobilizing a one thousand man March to protest against the bill.

The Assembly is yet to make any statement on this development.

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