Lagos Refuses to Follow Otti’s Example, Insists Ex-Govs Pension is a Priority

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The Lagos State Government has made it abundantly clear that repealing the pension law for former Governors and Deputies of the state is not a priority, despite recent praise garnered by Governor Alex Otti of Abia for signing a bill to abolish such pensions in his state.

Otti’s move has stirred discontent among Nigerians towards states like Lagos, where pension payments for former governors and their deputies remain law, even as former Chief Bola Tinubu has not served as President, and his successor, Babatunde Raji-Fashola, served as a Minister.

The Lagos pension law, introduced by Chief Tinubu in 2007 during the twilight of his tenure as Governor, initially entitled former Governors and Deputies to various benefits, including houses in Lagos and Abuja, six new cars every three years, 100 percent of the incumbent governor’s basic salary, free healthcare, furniture, house maintenance, utility, car maintenance, and entertainment allowances running into millions per annum, as well as a personal assistant and security personnel.

Although lawmakers slashed these pensions by 50 percent in 2021, it remains unclear how much of these benefits Chief Tinubu and his successors have enjoyed so far, despite Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu initially promising to repeal the law.

When contacted, Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotosho, emphasized that repealing the pension law for Governors and Deputies was not a priority for the state.

“If Alex Otti does something in his state, does that make it a law that everybody must do in his own state? You see, every state has its own style. Every state is independent. I mean, if Abia does something, doesn’t mean that Lagos has to follow suit. I mean, everybody has his own priorities. If that is their own priority, that’s fine. That doesn’t mean Lagos has to follow,” Omotosho said.

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