He challenged the National Assembly leadership to release the budget and all allowances of the legislature to the public.
The governor’s action followed the face-off between him and the leadership of the National Assembly last Friday, in which they traded words over the anti-corruption disposition of the legislative arm of government.
The Speaker and governor el-Rufai who spoke at the closing of a retreat for management of the National Assembly in Kaduna challenged the executive and legislative arms of government to be transparent enough and publish their finances, so as to end speculations about graft in governance.
el-Rufai who was the first to speak noted that the 8th National Assembly, particularly the Senate, is perceived by the public as an opposition to the anti-corruption war of the current administration.
But as soon as it was his turn to speak, Dogara who did not find the governor’s observation funny challenged state governors to account for funds allotted as security votes as well as allocation to local government councils under their control.
Determined to drive home his point, Governor el-Rufai made public his pay slip and specifics of security vote yesterday.
In a statement signed by his spokesman, Samuel Aruwan, the governor said Kaduna State government will continue to remain transparent and open in all its finances, adding that “that is what we have promised to all our people and that is what our party, the APC and our President stand for.
“Malam Nasir El-Rufai is today making publicly available his pay-slip as Governor of Kaduna State. In February 2017, the Kaduna State Government paid the Governor a net salary of N470,521.74”, Aruwan stated.
He gave details of his salary including income and deductions as follows: Basic Salary, N185,308.75; hardship allowance, N370,617.50; gross pay N555,926.25; PAYE, N85,404.51; total deduction N85,401.51 and net pay, N470,521.74.
“The amount may appear puny but it reflects what the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission approved as the salary and allowances of every State Governor adjusted to reflect provision in-kind of accommodation and transportation”, Aruwan said in the statement made available to LEADERSHIP.
The governor challenged the National Assembly leadership to do the same and disclose the details of the its budget, as well as the salaries and allowances of its members.
Aruwan said, “The call to #OpenNASS is not a personal one. It is one which the leadership of the National Assembly owes to all Nigerians. It is therefore disingenuous for the Speaker to use State Government budgets as the excuse for the opacity of the NASS budget. In 2016, the NASS budget for its 469 members was larger than the capital budget of Kaduna State, with close to 10 million inhabitants.
“It is also larger than the entire budget of several Nigerian States. Indeed, over the past ten years from 2008, the NASS as an institution has cost the country over a trillion naira without any detail on how this amount was allocated and spent.
“There is no state government in Nigeria with a budget nearly as opaque as that of NASS. In March 2016, this National Assembly, led by its Chairman, promised to provide a detailed breakdown of the National Assembly budget. Nigerians are waiting”.
The Kaduna governor argued that the budgets of all state governments in Nigeria are detailed out and presented at least under the headings of personnel cost, overhead, and capital expenditure, unlike the budget of the National Assembly which is a single line item of over N100 billion that divulges zero information or details.
The statement further noted: “NASS can at least break down its own single line budget into the hundreds of line items that are detailed in every state government budget in Nigeria. It is disingenuous to respond to every request for transparency by casting aspersions.
“The Local Government budgets provide details of the recurrent and capital spending of every single LG in a transparent manner. The proposed 2017 LG Budgets, currently before the State Assembly, are also already online on the same website, and on www.kdsg.gov.ng. Approved State Budgets 2016-2017 can be found on http://openkaduna.com.ng/Budget/approved-budget. We invite the Right Honourable Speaker to download and peruse at his pleasure”.