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By NBF News
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The new salary level which takes effect from April 2009 affects the salaries and allowances of ministers, Special Advisers, chief executives and chairmen and members of constitutional bodies mentioned in the Certain Political, Public and Judicial office Holders (salaries and Allowances, etc) Act 2008.

While the President' s salary would drop from N3,514,705.00 to N2,811,764, that of the Vice President would come down to N2,425,257.6 from N3,031,572.50.

The Salary of Minister, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Chairmen of statutory bodies, Head of Service, Chief of Staff and Principal Private Secretary to the President is reduced to N1,621,120 from N2,026,400.00 while Federal Commissioner/Member of constitutional bodies would now receive N1,566,064 from N1,957,580.00.

Also, the Special Adviser to the President would receive N1, 554,300 as against N1,942,875.00 his former pay, while Auditor General, Accountant General and Permanent Secretary including Director General and Executive Secretary would each receive N1,540,692 from N1,925,865.00.

According Economic Confidential magazine, the amount to be saved from the deductions which is estimated at N2.5billion per annum would be pooled into a fund which is to purchase additional transportation for public sector workers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to ease the burden of transportation costs.

However, the new directive does not affect judicial officers and legislators as they are different arms.

A presidency source said that the Presidency has emphasized the need for the two other arms of government to make voluntary decisions regarding sacrifices as suggested. It stated that as the National Assembly is considering such reduction in their remunerations, the judicial officers are reluctant.

The Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Idris Kutigi had in March 2009 insisted that the directive of President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua for the downward review of remuneration packages does not extend to judicial officers because the security of tenure of all judicial officers in the Federation is guaranteed under Section 84 Subsection (1)- (4) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, to the effect that salaries and allowances of judicial officers cannot be altered to their disadvantage.

By this act of the Federal Government the RMAFC is presently in dilemma of accepting the voluntary deductions by the Presidency for its officers which constitutionally should pass through various constitutionally processes.