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HomeNewsObasanjo To Nigerian Governors: Emulate Otti, Stop Pensions To Ex-governors

Obasanjo To Nigerian Governors: Emulate Otti, Stop Pensions To Ex-governors

 

 

Olusegun Obasanjo, the former president of Nigeria, has urged state governors to follow in the footsteps of Governor Alex Otti of Abia State by doing away with legislation that permits previous governors and deputies in their states to receive pensions.

On Tuesday, the Abia State Assembly passed a bill to abolish the 2001 law that provided lifetime incomes and pensions, including state-funded mansions in Abia and Abuja, to past governors and deputy governors of the state.

 

On Thursday, Governor Otti signed the bill into law.

 

Despite the law’s existence, at least two former state governors have claimed they were not given their pensions, and the state administration has not disclosed the beneficiaries’ names or the amount of money that has been paid to the former politicians.

 

The law’s repeal also complies with earlier demands made by civil society organizations to have similar laws repealed in the states where they were in place.

 

According to a statement sent by Mr. Otti’s spokeswoman, Kazie UKo, Obasanjo praised the governor for his bravery in repealing the law when he visited him at his private residence on Friday.

 

“I watched the television and I saw repealing of Abia pensions and I asked you what exactly is this, and you said to me that the pension scheme for former governors here was too outrageous.

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“It’s like trouble because it allowed them to have a house in Abuja and elsewhere, and it allowed them to cart away with whatever they can, yet the pensions of ordinary people from 2014 were unpaid,” he told the governor.

 

“What sort of leadership! You came and said there would be an end to that rascality. I congratulate you, and I say to you, I hope that your colleagues will follow your footsteps?” Mr Obasanjo added.

 

The former president, while congratulating Mr Otti on his emergence as governor of the state, reminded him that a lot of work needed to be done.

 

“There is still a lot of work to be done. I said to you, you have started, but you should never be tired.

 

“Don’t be discouraged; you will be abused, you will be called names but if we have one-third of our states doing what should be done, this country will be a different country,” he said.

 

Mr. Obasanjo asked the governor to focus on the Abia State’s infrastructure development, stating that the state will achieve greater heights with infrastructure and sound leadership.

 

In response, Mr. Otti gave the previous president his word that his administration was committed to building infrastructure, particularly in Aba, the state’s commercial center.

 

The governor reported that in the past nine months, his government had finished and put into service ten roads in Aba, with thirty-one other roads in varying states of completion.

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