JUMBO PAY

By NBF News
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Talks about bloated governments in the nation notwithstanding, the federal and 36 state governments still operate a total cabinet volume of 1,411 members. Saturday Sun exclusive investigation has revealed that the nation would spend about N63, 992, 763, 808 to pay their salaries.

Figures we got from the Revenue Mobilisation Administration and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) show that a minister earns N650, 136.67 per month. That translates to N7, 801, 640. 04 per annum or N31, 206, 560.16 in the four-year tenure.

With about 40 ministers in President Goodluck Jonathan's cabinet, the FG spends N1, 248, 262, 406.4 in the four years they will be in office only on salaries.

The president's special advisers and others enjoy a package of a basic N1.942m in a year or a gross pay of N7, 091, 493.72 with a breakdown sum of N590, 957.81 total monthly salary, with the allowances.

That also implies that a special adviser earns N28, 365, 974. 88 in four years, and by extension, the 20 special advisers will take home N567, 319, 497.6 from FG's coffers in four years.

The two class of FG cabinet members will take the Federal Government a total of N1, 815, 581, 904.

A national research revealed that there are about 668 commissioners in the 36 state governments. Or succinctly put, at the time the states would have constituted their cabinets, the nation will have this total number of commissioners.

Our figure is derived from an average arising from 25 states, where we got their specific number of commissioners. Twenty-four states we had  with their accurate figure of commissioners, have a total of 464 commissioners. That figure gives an average of about 19 commissioners per state. With this number already from up to two thirds of the total states, it is accurate to say that all the states, at the time of constituting their cabinet, will have the same average. With 19 commissioners in a state, the 36 will have 684 commissioners.

Taking a cue from RMAFC figures, as it applies to government appointees, it's believed each state commissioner earns an average of N500, 000 per month. This  means a commissioner will take home N6million in a year  or N24million for the four years of being in office. The amount brings the total for all the states to N16,032,000,000.

Also, a special adviser in the state earns about N400, 000 per month. Across the country, the number of special advisers, senior special advisers, special assistants and others is put at 455. With also our datum point of deriving an average for all the states, based on the available figure, each state will have about 18.2 advisers, approximately 19 at the final point. With that, the states will have a grand total of 655 advisers. Each of them will earn N5, 400, 000 per year or N21, 600, 000 in four years.  For the 655 advisers in the states, the earning amounts to N14, 148, 000,000 only. The states will spend on the commissioners and advisers some N30, 180, 800.

When the state bill is added to the total salary of the federal cabinet members of N1, 815, 581, 904, the two tiers of government will part with N31, 996, 381,904 in four years of the tenure of this administration.

However, if the salary of the cabinet members will be computed from the month they assumed duty, there will be a little downward variation in the figure. But if we shall take that the non-regular allowances of the cabinet members - engagement bonus, severance allowance, car, house, medical, estacode, out of station, furniture etc are as much as the regular salaries, that means the spending on the team will be twice the figure we have here, and would be N63, 992, 763,808.

The figure in a nation as Nigeria with its economic strength, infrastructure development level and the poverty rate below the UN margin, may give credence to those that express the fears that the nation's democracy is bogus and expensive.

Cabinet table
Cabinet            Ministers/                       Advisers/

Commissioners            assistants
Federal government    40        20
Abia State                   23        35
Akwa Ibom     20        5
Anambra         16           6
Cross River     12        20
Delta   22        12
Ebonyi             20        6
Enugu  25        56
Imo      17        66
Sokoto             13        24
Kebbi             17 (sent, not approved yet)      non yet

Katsina            16        18
Kano   15        30
Kaduna           29        2 and 2 to come
Niger   21        12
Benue  16        13
Kwara             16        23
Plateau            16        15
Ondo   21        12
Ogun   18        15
Ekiti    17        64
Lagos  21        16
Edo     18        16
Bauchi 22        non yet
Yobe   21 (tentative)   non yet
Rivers  7 (now, more to come)            non yet
Osun    16(just submitted)       non yet