AIDES OF NATIONAL ASSEMBLY MEMBERS DEMAND THAT THE EXECUTIVE REVEAL THEIR RUNNING COSTS

The Conference of National Assembly Legislative Aides (CONASSLA), a forum of current and former aides to members of the national assembly, has requested that President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo reveal their running costs. According to the forum, Aisha Buhari, wife of the president, ministers, heads of agencies and parastatals of the government running costs should also be disclosed. On Saturday, Abdullahi Al-Mustapha, chairman of CONASSLA, in a statement said the executive should reveal its running costs in-line with the transparency agenda of the federal government.

According to CONASSLA, the information should be published “in seven days”. The forum further said that failure on the part of the executive to do so would be an infringement on the trust of the citizens who elected the government to curb excessive spending. “This request stems from openness of the national assembly in recent times, with the disclosure of the running costs of senators and the inexplicable 2018 budgetary provisions that show that the president alone, has budgeted over 900million naira for the running costs of his cars in 2018”. “The national security adviser (NSA) has budgeted over 1.14billion naira for the cleaning of his office in 2018; and the minister of transport has budgeted 10billion naira for his transportation vehicles in 2018.

“These figures, when combined with the fact that the Directorate of State Security (DSS) intends on spending over 2.2billion naira on social media running costs, and the minister of communication, has owned up to receiving $800,000 in estacode, begs the question, how much does the executive spend in running costs? “We call on the executive branch to publish the full list of running costs of all the offices and individuals within its purview in seven days”. This call is coming after the revelation of Shehu Sani, senator representing Kaduna central, who said lawmakers in the upper legislative chamber receive 13.5 million naira monthly as running costs.

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