Despite cut in the salaries of President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice-President Professor Yemi Osinbajo, both of them including cabinet ministers and other political appointees pocketed the sum of N2.295 billion as official salaries and allowances in the last one year.
Economic Confidential gave the breakdown on Sunday in an analysis of official remunerations of the President, Vice-President, Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Head of Service of the Federation, Ministers, and other top government functionaries as approved by the Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).
RMAFC determines and fixes the remuneration packages of public and political office holders, while the National Salaries, Wages and Income Commission fixes the salaries and allowances of civil servants in Nigeria.
Packages by RMAFC include: annual salaries, accommodation, vehicle maintenance/fuel, personal assistant, house maintenance, domestic staff, entertainment and utilities allowances.
Other are constituency allowance, hardship allowance, newspapers and monitoring allowances.
A critical examination of the report indicates that Mr. President has an annual basic salary of N3.51m, Vice- President N3.03m, while Ministers, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Head of Service and Chairmen of Boards of statutory agencies have N2.02m respectively.
Special advisers, Speech writers, Directors General, Accountant General of the Federation, Permanent Secretaries, CEOs of agencies and INEC Resident Electoral Commissioners, each collect an annual basic salary of N1.9m. Officers under this category are called ‘members of constitutional bodies’.
It shows that only the President and the Vice-President enjoy hardship allowances of 50 percent each of their annual basic salaries; 250 percent as Constituency Allowances and enjoy other perks to be provided (TBP) by government.
Benefits the duo are entitled to include, but not limited to: Accommodation, Furniture, Domestic Staff, Personal Assistants, Newspapers, Vehicles, Entertainment, Maintenance and Estacode.
Meanwhile, Ministers, Advisers, Permanent Secretaries and INEC Resident Commissioners are entitled to 200 percent of their annual basic salary for Accommodation; 300 percent for Furniture; 75 percent for Vehicle maintenance and fuel; 25 percent for Personal Assistant; 75 percent for domestic staff; 45 percent for entertainment; 30 percent for utilities; 15 percent for newspapers, and 20 percent for monitoring.
While the President and Vice President’s duty tours and estacode are provided by government at varying rates, other officials have fixed rates.
The estacode allowance per day for ministers, SGF, Head of Service and Chairmen of Board is $1000 per night on foreign trip; Member of constitutional bodies $900 per night; Special Advisers and Speech Writers $800 per night; Permanent Secretaries, Director-Generals/CEO of agencies and INEC Electoral Commissioner take $600 per night each on foreign trips.
A comparism of the figures with earning of an average Nigerian worker with a minimum wage of N18,000 a month, show that civil servants will have to work for more than four years before earning the utility allowance budgeted for Ministers of the Federal Republic.