Legislative aides to members of the National Assembly have threatened to shut down the federal parliament if the N5.8 billion allowances allegedly owed them are not paid.
The legislative aides gave the threat as they protested yesterday at the central lobby of the National Assembly, shouting “we are aides and not slaves, pay us our entitlements.”
Chairman of the aggrieved legislative aides, Sam Melaye, who spoke with journalists on their plights, said the entitlements, totalling about N5.8 billion, must be paid before resumption of the lawmakers this month, adding that failure to pay would lead to shutting down of the parliament.
The entitlements, according to him, are Duty Tour Allowances (DTA) not paid to any one of them within the last three years, which is over N2 billion and training allowances on calculation of N1 billion per year.
“By laid down procedures and yearly budgetary provisions of N250 million on quarterly basis, each of the legislative aides is expected to go for training on the template of capacity-building, the totality of which is N1 billion per year but for the past three years, no category of the aides have been sent on any training, let alone being paid the required allowances,” he stated.
He said the aides under the aegis of National Assembly Legislative Aides Forum (NASSLAF) had made concerted efforts to get the leadership of the National Assembly politically and administratively within the last three months in getting the monies paid without required response or co-operation from them.