Nigerian News

My monthly allowance was N25m, salary can’t last 3 days – Ex-speaker, Dogara

Yakubu Dogara has revealed that his monthly salary was N400,000 when he served as the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the sum could not last more than three days.

He made the reveelation on Wednesday, July 3 while speaking at the Open Week of the House of Representatives in Abuja.

Dogara also disclosed that as presiding officer of the lower legislative house, he received N25 million as monthly allowance.

He stressed that the earnings of members of the National Assembly have been on the front burner for a while, even though their pay is not humongous as perceived.

The former speaker noted that the misconception of huge salaries and allowances by Nigerians has given the National Assembly a negative image where they are called thieves even at public fora.

Dogara noted: “While I was Speaker, my salary was less than N400,000. I don’t know if it has been increased now. My total imprest was N25 million and I told my accountant to open a separate account for the imprest and I never once took any money out of that account. Everything that came into that account was used to cater to the needs of constituents.

“My accountant complained of the level of demand on the account and I told him if the money there is finished, borrow, when money comes, you return it to where you had taken money from.

“I am saying this so Nigerians will give their legislatures breathing space and know that the narrative is not true about members’ pay. We all know that democracy is expensive and if we think that it is too expensive, maybe we should ask our political scientists to develop for us a local model that will be cheaper for us.”

The former lawmaker also said the time had come for the National Assembly to throw open its finances to dispel the insinuation that the legislators were taking a huge amount of money monthly.