The Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) has approved a 114 per cent increase in the salaries of elected politicians, including the President, vice president, governors, lawmakers as well as judicial and public office holders.
RMAFC is saddled with the responsibility of determining the remuneration appropriate for political officeholders including the President, Vice President, Governors, Deputy Governors, Ministers, Commissioners, Special Advisers, Legislators and the holders of the offices as mentioned in Sections 84 and 124 of this Constitution.
The commission urged the 36 states’ Houses of Assembly to hasten efforts on amendment of relevant laws to give room for upward review of remuneration packages for political, judicial and public officers.
RMAFC Chairman, Muhammadu Shehu, represented by a federal commissioner, Rakiya Tanko-Ayuba, made the call at the presentation of reports of the reviewed remuneration package to Kebbi State governor, Dr Nasir Idris, on Tuesday in Birnin Kebbi.
He said the implementation of the reviewed remuneration packages was effective from January 1, 2023, adding that the move was in accordance with the provision of paragraph 32(d) of part 1 of the Third Schedule of the 1999 constitution of the federal government (as amended).
He said the last remuneration review was conducted in 2007, noting that it culminated in the “certain political, public and judicial office holders (salaries and allowances, etc) (Amendment) Act, 2008”.
Shehu said, “It empowers the revenue mobilisation, allocation and fiscal commission to determine the remuneration appropriate for political office holders, including the president, vice-president, governors, deputy governors, ministers, commissioners, special advisers, legislators and the holders of the offices mentioned in sections 84 and 124 of the constitution of the federal government.
“Sixteen years after the last review, it is imperative that the remuneration packages for the categories of the office holders mentioned in relevant sections of the 1999 constitution (as amended) should be reviewed.
“Pursuant to the above, your excellency may please recall that on Wednesday, 1st February, 2023, the commission held a one-day zonal public hearing on the review of the remuneration package simultaneously in all the six (6) geo-political zones of the country. The aim of the exercise was to harvest inputs/ideas from a broad spectrum of stakeholders.”
He said the commission had objectively and subjectively reviewed the salary packages in the reports, adding that it adheres to the rules of equity and fairness, risk and responsibilities, national order of precedence among others.
“The subjective criteria reflected the various expression by stakeholders through memoranda received, opinion expressed during the zonal public hearings and responses to questionnaires administered.
“The objectives of the criteria were obtained from analysis of macro-economic variables particularly the Consumer Price Index (CPI),” he noted.
The chairman added that the commission was also guided by some principles, including equity and fairness; risk and responsibilities; national order of precedence; motivation and tenure of office.
Shehu said that having considered the impact of the review on the economy, the remuneration of the political, public and judicial office holders in the country was adjusted “upward by 114%.”
The chairman explained that with respect to the judicial office holders, the commission considered the introduction of three new allowances.
He listed the allowances to include, “Professional Development Assistant: This is to allow for the provision of two law clerks to all judicial officers in the country.
“Long Service Allowance: This is to guarantee seniority/hierarchy between officers who have been on the bench for a minimum of five years and those that are appointed newly.
“Restricted or Forced Lifestyle: This is to take care of the nature of the lifestyle of judicial officers while in active service.”