Men's Roundtable They don't really care about us

Nigerian politicians and public office holders are by far the most insensitive in the whole world as all they only think is about themselves.

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The Men's Roundtable

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When the late legendary pop icon, Michael Jackson released one of his hit albums, HIStory in 1995, he had this tracked entitled 'All I wanna Say Is That They Don't Really Care About us', he was seriously vilified for penning anti-Semitic lyrics.

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But from the look of things, Jackson must have had Nigerian politicians and public office holders in mind when he sang that song because they have continuously shown that they do not care about Nigerians.

All our politicians care is about themselves, and that is why they would do everything to get into power, including killing, maiming, rigging and all sorts of shenanigans just to get into office.

And once they get in there, they go to any length to perpetuate themselves in power, including amassing so much wealth by every means possible, abandoning the people they were meant to serve.

In Nigeria, holding a public office is seen as one of the biggest industry and woe betide anyone who does not steal the nation blind.

In the past few days, revelations have shown that Nigerian political office holders take home the most salaries and allowances on top of what they steal.

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Nigerian fighting lawmakers

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Nigeria's fighting lawmakers

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No wonder members of the National Assembly do nothing but fight all the time because of money.

They allocate stupendous amounts of money for themselves, giving them spurious and laughable names including hardship allowance, sitting allowance, security votes, tea allowance, entertainment allowance.

The 109 Senators and 360 members of the House of Representatives earn so much that other lawmakers in other lands would look like dwarfs when it comes to salaries.

That is not even talking about the salaries of Governors, Ministers, Commissioners and the President.

Considering the fact that these public office holders are supposed to be public servants,  and with the kind of service they render, are they supposed to be paid such high wages from taxpayers money?

While they feed fat on our collective wealth, the taxpayers are reeling in abject poverty, with the N18,000 minimum wage not even enough to take care of their daily needs.

And yet we are told to begin change with ourselves while they have become Lords of the Manor.

While a lawmaker in the United States where they take their work seriously earns a minimum wage of $15,080 (N2.3 million) per month, and $174,000 in a year, members of the 54 standing Senate committee in Nigeria earn a whopping monthly salary between N648 million and N972 million per year; a member of the House of Representatives earns between N35 million and N140 million as quarterly or yearly allowances.

And to add insult to injuries, they have some stupid allowances embedded into their take-home pay.

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Can any right thinking Nigerian come to terms with these allowances our lawmakers take home for doing nothing?

Basic Salary (BS) = N2,484, 245.50

Hardship allowance: 50% of Basic Salary = N1,242, 122.75

Constituency allowance: 200% of BS = N4,968,509.00

Furniture Allowance: 300% of BS = N7,452,736.50

Newspaper allowance: 50% = N1,242,122.70

Wardrobe allowance: 25% = N621,061.37

Recess Allowance: 10% = N248,424.55

Accommodation: 200% = N4,968,509.00

Utilities: 30% = N828,081.83

Domestic Staff: 35% = N863,184.12

Entertainment: 30% = N828,081.83

Personal Assistance: 25% = N621,061.37

Vehicle Maintenance Allowance: 75% = N1,863,184.12

Leave Allowance : 10% = N248,424.55

One off payments (Severance gratuity): 300% = N7,452,736.50

Motor Vehicle Allowance: 400% of BS = N9,936,982.00

Total per month = N29,479,749.00 ($148,139.57)

This means that even in this harsh economic situation in the country, a Senator takes home around N353, 756, 988 per annum.

Apart from these allowances and regular salaries, they are still entitled to other allowances for estacodes and duty tours, all for doing absolutely nothing.

And when they retire, their pensions are paid promptly while Governors get choice houses built for them, cars provided, medical trips abroad for them and their families, while we ordinary Nigerians pay for these luxuries.

Is it now clear to Nigerians that they don't really care about us but what they can get from us? This should be food for thought for us Nigerians.

Do you think our lawmakers and political office holders care about Nigerians?»

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