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Equity in Governance: SERAP Presses Tinubu to Stop Double Benefits for Ministerial Ex-Governors

Lagos, Nigeria – The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), a Nigerian non-governmental organization advocating for transparency and accountability, has called on former Lagos State Governor and All Progressives Congress (APC) stalwart, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to lead the charge in halting the controversial practice of allowing former governors to concurrently collect pensions and salaries as ministers.

In a statement released today, SERAP cited the issue as a significant concern in Nigeria's governance landscape, emphasizing that it represents a misuse of public resources and contravenes the principles of equity and fairness. The practice of "double dipping," where former governors continue to receive pensions from their respective states while also drawing salaries as federal ministers, has long raised eyebrows among citizens and activists.

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Adetokunbo Mumuni, SERAP's Executive Director, noted that this practice is inconsistent with good governance and the efficient allocation of resources. "Nigeria's resources are already stretched thin, and such practices only serve to further burden the public coffers while contributing to the inequality gap," Mumuni remarked.

The organization also implored Tinubu, who himself is a former Lagos State governor and a political heavyweight, to use his influence and reputation to advocate for change within his party and the broader political landscape. SERAP believes that his support could catalyze meaningful reforms and set a positive example for other political figures to follow.

Tinubu, often referred to as the "Jagaban of Lagos," has yet to publicly respond to SERAP's appeal. However, given his prominent role in Nigerian politics and his aspirations for higher office, his stance on this issue could carry significant weight in shaping the public discourse.

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The debate around pensions for former governors who take up ministerial positions is not new. Critics argue that these pensions, often seen as substantial, should be discontinued to reduce financial strain on state budgets and promote ethical governance. Supporters, on the other hand, claim that such pensions are legally established entitlements and that the officials' federal appointments should not negate their rights to these benefits.

As Nigeria continues to grapple with economic challenges, governance reform has become a pressing issue. Public outcry against corruption, wasteful spending, and unequal distribution of resources has grown louder in recent years, forcing political leaders to consider taking action.

In light of SERAP's call to action, all eyes are now on Tinubu, waiting to see whether he will heed their request and utilize his platform to spearhead change. Regardless of the outcome, the conversation surrounding pensions for former governors-turned-ministers is expected to gain traction in the coming weeks, reigniting discussions about the responsible use of public funds and the need for equitable governance practices.

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