Zamfara Assembly repeals law on mega pension for Yari, others

Mr. Abdulaziz Yari, former governor of Zamfara State

Zamfara House of Assembly has repealed the law mandating the state government to pay pension and other entitlements of former governors and deputies, as well as those of Speakers and their deputies.

Presenting the bill before the House on Tuesday, House leader Hon Faruk Musa Dosara, urged his colleagues to, as a matter of urgency, consider the repeal of the law which provided jumbo pay for former political leaders in the state to the detriment of retired civil servants who have not been paid their entitlements over the years.

Dosara said the category of past leaders were collecting over N700,000m annually, which, he said, the present state economy could not accommodate for now.

Seconding the motion at the chamber, Hon Tukur Jekada Birnin Tudu from Bakura local government, said the abolition of the law was necessary, arguing that “it is detrimental to the socio-economic wellbeing of our people.”

After serious deliberations and contributions by House members, the Speaker, Hon Nasiru Mu’azu Magarya, ordered the clerk of the House to give the bill first and second reading.

The House then went for a committee of whole meeting, after which  the bill went for a third reading.

The House resolved that the bill has now been passed into law and would be sent to the governor for assent.

With this development, all past political leaders in the state will no longer enjoy any entitlements unless those prescribed by the National Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission.

Ex-Gov Yari protests non-payment of his N10m monthly allowance

A former governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari, has asked his successor, Bello Matawalle, to pay his outstanding allowances and pension.

Yari, in a letter dated October 17, 2019, which was addressed to Matawalle, said he was entitled to N10m monthly as “upkeep allowance,” but that he had only been paid twice since he left office.

According to the former governor, the law, which provides for the entitlement of former governors, deputies, speakers and deputy speakers, was amended in March and should not be truncated.

The letter reads in part, “I wish to humbly draw your attention to the provision of the law on the above subject matter, which was amended and assented to on March 23, 2019.

“The law provides, among other entitlements of the former governor, a monthly upkeep allowance of N10m only and a pension equivalent to the salary he was receiving while in office.

“Accordingly, you may wish to be informed that since the expiration of my tenure on May 29, 2019, I was only paid the upkeep allowance twice — i.e. for the month of June and July, while my pension for the month of June has not been paid.”

The former governor added that the law provided that the pension and upkeep allowance “are not in the category of privileges that can be truncated without any justifiable reason, hence, the need to request you to kindly direct the settlement of the total backlog of the pension and upkeep as provided by the law.”

Yari’s Special Adviser, Media and Publicity, Ibrahim Dosara, said he was not aware of the letter.

Dosara said the only person who could speak on the issue was Yari’s Principal Private Security, Alhaji Sa,adu, whose phone numbers were switched off.

Efforts were also made to talk to the All Progressives Congress Chairman, Lawal Liman, but his phone rang out when he was called.

PUNCH

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