A new salary scale for political, elected and non-elected office holders will be ready next month, the Chairman, Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), Mr. Elias Mbam, has disclosed.
Speaking with journalists at the Presidential Villa in Abuja after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, he said the review included the remuneration package for members of the National Assembly, which has generated controversy.
He said: “Presently, we are reviewing the subsisting remuneration package and it is going to reflect the socio-economic realities of today.
“We expect that before the end of next month, it will be ready. But it will go through a process, it is not something that you will just say yes or no to. It will go through a process and it should be obvious to you the economic realities of the day and it is for government to reflect that.”
Asked whether the review would cover that of the National Assembly, Mbam replied: “When I talk of the salary package, the responsibility of the commission is to determine the remuneration for political office holders, both elected and appointed, from the national level to the local government level.
“Of course, National Assembly members are elected, it will include them, it will include the judiciary, it will include the state legislature, the executive and of course the local government will be included.”
He made reference to the falling price of crude oil, adding that many government agencies including states and local governments have not been able to pay their workers’ salaries.
According to him, these are some of the issues that make it compelling to review the remuneration package.
He said: “It did not start with this administration, we started the review as far back as last year. It is not because of the present administration that we commenced it.”
Asked whether members of the National Assembly would accept the new package being proposed, he said: “They do not have a choice. We are guided by the constitution and we are going to be guided by such laws that are provided for in the constitution and the oath we swore to obey.”
Mbam pointed out that one of the challenges facing the commission was inadequate funding.
He suggested that the commission should be made one of the agencies of government that is granted financial autonomy.
“The best way to do that is to include it as one of the agencies that will benefit from first line charge on the Federation Account.
“The second is to give the commission the power of enforcement. They should review the Act establishing the commission so that it can have the power of enforcement and sanctions on any of the defaulting MDAs,” he explained.
He said based on the commission’s stipulation, no member of the National Assembly should earn up to N1 million a month.
“What we read on the pages of newspapers is not known to the commission because there is no member of the National Assembly, based on what we determined, should earn up to N1 million a month.
“We have done a lot to enlighten the general public on the true position of the remuneration package. First and foremost, it is on our website, it is clearly written there and we have had course to publish the package several times in many national dailies.
“We have also had interactions with the press at different forums where we explained what the commission had determined,” he added.
He said Buhari advised the commission to ensure that it employed all legitimate means to make sure that all public office holders take home the remuneration as determined by the commission and ensure that leakages are blocked.
Asked when the new revenue sharing formula would be made public, he said: “I do not want to give a definite date because it is beyond my control. I do not determine when the process will be concluded, but as far as the commission is concerned, we have concluded our work and announced to the general public that we have a draft on the new formula. But you know it goes through a process before it finally becomes a law.”
In a statement provided by his media aide, Garba Shehu, Buhari, who also chided RMAFC for approving excessive remunerations for some political office holders, urged the commission to seek a proper interpretation of its powers and address the public outcry against the unreasonably high payments.

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