‘N’ Assembly Members with Pending Election Cases Don’t Deserve Full Pay’
Written by Taiwo Adediran on June 26, 2015
Members of the National Assembly whose victories are being challenged at the election petition tribunals should be placed on half salaries and allowances pending the final determination of their cases.
This was the position of the senatorial candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, (APGA) for Abia North in the last election, Dr. David Onuoha-Bourdex, in a statement made available to journalists in Umuahia, in reaction to the ongoing controversial jumbo pay for the members of the federal legislature.
He contended that given the discouraging financial situation in the country money should not be wasted on lawmakers whose seats are shaky having used hook or crook means to get into the National Assembly just to enjoy the fat salaries and allowances.
According to him, there was every likelihood that many of those with pending cases at the tribunal would not remain at the NASS by the time their cases would be determined hence the proper thing was for such persons to be placed on half salary and allowances.
Onuoha-Bourdex, who is currently at the tribunal challenging his loss of Abia North senate seat to Chief Mao Ohuabunwa, argued further that since it would not be possible to have the members who lose their seats at the tribunal to refund the “unmerited” wages and allowances, the embattled lawmakers should not be placed on full pay.
Referring to the alleged confession of a declared winner of a House of Representative election on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that his APGA counterpart had actually won the election, Onuoha-Bourdex said that could be similar instances of the declared winners would toe the path of honour and confess.
On the current crisis rocking the national assembly over the choice of principal officers, Onuoha-Bourdex said that, “there is a high probability that lawmakers who cheated their way into the federal legislature could be among those fueling the ongoing leadership crisis in the National Assembly.”
The senatorial candidate, who is also a telecommunications expert, expressed strong hope that in a few months time he would be vindicated as the true winner of the Abia North senatorial poll and the people would begin to reap the benefits of their popular mandate.