Premium Times (Abuja)

Nigeria: How Presidential Aides With Less Duties Earn More Money Than Police Inspector-General

Successive Nigerian governments between 2007 and 2014 have paid far higher salaries and perks of office to some presidential aides than what have been paid to the Inspectors General of Police, IGP, who are vested with far more responsibilities, PREMIUM TIMES' review of wages of public officials, has found.

Alongside presidential aides, the examination also shows that heads of the Nigerian Army, Navy, Air Force and Director-General of the State Security of Service, SSS, receive more salaries and perks than the IGP.

The chairpersons of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission, ICPC, also draw improved earnings ahead of the police chief.

Confidential documents obtained from the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission, NSIWC, show how the Olusegun Obasanjo presidency approved higher perks for presidential aides against that of the IGP. The rates remained the same under his successors, Umaru Yar'Adua, and Goodluck Jonathan.

A circular dated January 18, 2007, referenced: SWC/S/04/S.303/1 and signed by the then Chairman of the Commission, F.O. Williams, conveyed Mr. Obasanjo's approval of the emoluments enjoyed by these privileged sets of government officials. The new rates took effect from January 1, 2007.

Titled, Consolidated Top Federal Public Office Holders' Salary Structure, CONTOPSAL, the circular set out the schedule of salary, professional allowances and rent subsidy for the affected officers.

In it, the Chief of Staff to the President, the National Security Adviser, the Chief Economic Adviser to the President as well as Army Generals and Chief of Defence staff on step one, earn a consolidated salary of N3, 434, 013 annually.

These class of officers on step two earn a consolidated annual salary of N3, 891,713, while those on step three earn N4, 349,413 and those on step four N4, 807,113.

However, the IGP, Lieutenant Generals in the Army and their equivalents in the military on step one earn N3,026,889 annually, those on step two earn N3,484,589, those on step three earn N3,942,289 and those on step four earn N4,399,989.

Under consolidated allowances, Major Generals and their equivalent in the military earn N1,003, 267, Lieutenant Generals and their equivalent earn N1,155,714 and Generals and their equivalent earn N1,334,725 annually.

Similarly, Deputy Inspectors-General of Police earn N824, 531 while the IGP gets N832, 159 in annual consolidated allowance.

The Nigerian police is considered amongst the lowest in remuneration and welfare, and analysts blame an alarming spate of corruption in the force on the dismal earning of its personnel.

Several claims of "police reforms" effort by multiple governments, aimed at improving earnings and modernizing their equipment, have yielded little.

The disparity in earnings at the highest echelon of the force, computed according to documents in possession of this paper, place aides to the president ahead of the police boss who has far weightier responsibilities. This appears to reflect the government's level of commitment that has left the police poorly funded for decades.

Less rent for the IGP

Under rent subsidy payable to officers who are not provided accommodation at government's expense, the IGP, Army Lieutenant Generals and their equivalents on step one are paid N876,904 per annum, those on step two get N1, 049,404, step three get N1,221,904 and those on step four earn N1,394,404.

But the Chief of Staff to the President, the National Security Adviser, the Chief Economic Adviser to the President as well as Army Generals and Chief of Defence staff on step one get an annual rent subsidy of N1,030,343.

Similar officers on step two, are given N1,202,843, those on step three get N1,375,343, while those on step four get N1,547,843.

Apart from these cadre of presidential aides, others who enjoy jumbo perks in the presidency include members of the Industrial Arbitration Panel who earn a maximum of N3.1million, Special Assistants to the President, Chief Speech Writer, Chief Press Secretary and Vice Chairman of Industrial Arbitration Panel get N3.3 million in annual consolidated salary.

Chief Physician to the President, Chairman, Industrial Arbitration Panel, Deputy Comptrollers Customs, Immigrations and Prisons, Deputy Commandant General, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, and Deputy Corp Marshals of the Federal Road Safety Commission are paid a maximum of N3.6million in annual consolidated salary.

All Directors-General of government agencies, Deputy Chief of Staff to the President, Senior Special Assistants to the President, Deputy Inspectors-General of Police, Major Generals and their equivalent in the military, Comptrollers-General of Customs, Immigrations and Customs, Commandant-General of NSCDC, FRSC Corps Marshal, Clerk of the National Assembly, Accountant-General for the Federation and Chief Registrar earn a consolidated annual salary of N4mllion.

Under rent subsidy, members of the Industrial Arbitration Panel earn a maximum of N977, 558 per annum, Special Assistants to the President, Chief Speech Writer, Chief Press Secretary and Vice Chairman of Industrial Arbitration Panel get N1,058,029.

Similarly, Chief Physician to the President, Chairman, Industrial Arbitration Panel, Deputy Comptrollers Customs, Immigration and Prisons, Deputy Commandant General, NSCDC, and Deputy Corp Marshals of the Federal Road Safety Commission are paid a maximum of N1,152,473 in annual rent subsidy.

However, Directors-General of government agencies, Deputy Chief of Staff to the President, Senior Special Assistants to the President, Deputy Inspectors-General of Police, Major Generals and their equivalent in the military, Comptrollers-General of Customs, Immigration and Customs, Commandant-General of NSCDC, FRSC Corps Marshal, Clerk of the National Assembly, Accountant-General for the Federation and Chief Registrar earn an annual rent subsidy N1, 263,735.

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