The Federal High Court in Lagos, in a landmark judgment, has directed the Nigerian Government to recover all pensions collected by all former governors now serving as Senators and Ministers of the Federal Republic Of Nigeria.
It also directed the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN to challenge the legality of states’ pension laws permitting former governors and other ex-public officials to collect such pensions.
The judgment by Justice Oluremi Oguntoyinbo followed an application for an order of mandamus in suit number FHC/L/CS/1497/2017 brought by the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP).
The judgment is coming on the heels of the invalidated pension law for former governors and other ex-public officers in Zamfara State, which provided for the upkeep of ex-governors to the tune of N700 million annually. The state has produced three former governors since 1999.
The court has adjourned to 3 February 2020 for the report of compliance with the judgment by the Federal government.
Reacting to the judgment on it’s Twitter account, SERAP wrote, “We won’t rest until this judgment is fully enforced and all state governors follow the Zamfara state example by immediately abolishing pension laws in their states”.
Here is SERAP’S tweets below
The court has adjourned to 3 February 2020 for report of compliance with the judgment by the Federal government.
We won't rest until this judgment is fully enforced and ALL state governors follow the Zamfara state example by immediately abolishing pension laws in their states.
— SERAP (@SERAPNigeria) December 4, 2019
It would be recalled that some state governors had passed bills into law that will enable them earn life pensions after their tenures. Some State House of Assembly Speakers and deputy speakers also enjoy the largesse at the detriment of the state.