A bill seeking to repeal the law, which grants pension and other emoluments to former Governors and their deputies scaled through second reading in Lagos Assembly on Monday.
The bill is titled ‘A Bill for a law to repeal the law to provide for the payment of pensions and other fringe benefits to public office holders in Lagos State and for other connected matters.
The lawmakers argued it would not be too good to repeal the law entirely as there were some important sections and stipulations that should be considered.
Oluyinka Ogundimu (Agege II) noted the decision to stop pensions and emoluments for former Governors and their deputies was in consideration of current economic challenges.
He, however, said the Governors, deputies and other such political office holders should enjoy some benefits no matter how little.
Ogundimu also argued the bill should be amended in such a way that it would not expose former political officers to security challenges because repealing the original law would mean withdrawing all security agents and domestic staff earlier attached to them.
Gbolahan Yishawu (Eti-Osa II) noted the Assembly has the power to make and review laws, especially where it includes one like the pension bill that was passed 14 years ago and needs to be reconsidered.
According to him, the bill, as raised by the executive, is to ensure the state begins to look inward in relation to the cost of governance.
He added that by virtue of his position as chairman of the committee on economic planning and budget, he had checked Lagos financial standing and “would say Lagos is not very rich but only has people who effectively manage its resources.”
Rotimi Abiru (Shomolu II), who supported an amendment of the law instead of an outright repeal, said: “For someone who has served as chief executive of a state, I do not think it is nice denying them their benefits.
“I can appreciate that some of them move to other appointments. For these people, there can be a caveat.
“But for those who serve in that capacity and do not have any other thing to do after office, it may not be something elaborate, but something may be coming to them periodically.”
Speaker Mudashiru Obasa supported arguments that repealing the law in totality would expose former Governors and Deputies to security challenges.
“I don’t think we should trash it in totality,” he said and committed the bill to the House Committee on Establishment with a two-week mandate to submit its report.