A member of the House of Representatives from Niger State, Lado Suleja, has stated that himself and many other colleagues, were coerced into donating their two months salaries, to the fight against Covid-19 in the country.
Lado Suleja, an All Progressives Congress, APC, Member representing Guevara/Suleja/Tafa Federal Constituency of Niger State, stated this in a radio interview in his Constituency.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, had announced that the entire members of the Lower Chamber, resolved to donate their two months salary to the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic in Nigeria.
The Speaker made the announcement in a video which he shared on Facebook.
The Senate also made an announcement to donate 50 percent of their salaries.
The two-month salary donation, the Speaker said, would be independent of the contributions by individual Lawmakers, to alleviate the hardship that their Constituents face at this time of national emergency.
Gbajabiamila stated that the Lawmakers’ donations would be transferred directly to the National Relief Fund account, for the fight against Covid-19.
An average monthly salary of a Member of the House of Representatives, is between N750,000 to N800,000 (excluding other allowances).
The Lawmaker, while speaking on the hardship the lockdown in Suleja, Niger State, has caused his Constituents, said that despite the fact that he made the donation of his salary against his wish, he still helps his Constituents, who are in desperate need.
“Though we were forced to donate our two months salary, we still help the poor with the little that we have, and we will still continue doing it, till we see the end of this virus”, Mr. Suleja said in Hausa language.
When asked by the Presenter to confirm if he said that they were coerced into the donation, the Lawmaker affirmed his earlier statement.
“Yes, we donated the salaries, because of the progress of Nigeria, but I am assuring you, most of us were not happy about it; that is the truth.
“It is just the way you see workers not happy about salary deductions, without their consent.”
The Lawmaker confirmed that he granted the interview, when contacted.
However, the House Spokesperson, Benjamin Kalu, when contacted, simply responded by sms, that the allegations were untrue.
“We were not forced. It is our sacrifice to assist the citizens going through hard times now.”