Rochas Okorocha: I Have Never Received Salary As Senator
Former Governor and Senator for Imo West, Chief Rochas Okorocha, has revealed that since becoming a Senator over two years ago, he has never gotten a penny in pay from the National Assembly.
iexclusivenews Nigeria reports that even though the philanthropist claimed he did not get a salary from the Imo State Government during his eight years as Governor.
While interacting with members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), FCT Council in Abuja on Monday, Okorocha also denied knowing how much a Senator receives as a monthly base pay or allowances.
iexclusivenews Nigeria learnt that Okorocha was visiting the NUJ for a talk with Abuja Journalists as part of preparations for his 59th birthday, which falls on September 22, 2021.
According to him, the National Assembly Management had his full agreement from the start of his service as Senator to channel his monthly pay and other perks into charity, which the Management initially objected to.
“As a Senator, I have never been paid. I did not receive any compensation for the years I spent as Governor of Imo State. I despise government funds. One thing about public funds is that if you don’t work for them, you shouldn’t collect them because they have spiritual ramifications,” Okorocha told the Journalists.
“I don’t know how much a Senator earns,” Okorocha replied when asked about senators’ basic pay and allowances. But I believe the basic income is around N2 million, with a housing allowance of around N3 million, transportation, and other allowances totaling around N10 million or N11 million, not sure.”
Okorocha, who has been advocating for a decrease in the expense of governance by lowering the number of senators to one for each state and three House of Representatives members from each state.
However, said that the Senators’ pay was insignificant in comparison to their status and cost of living.
“However, can the N3 million for housing allowance cover a Senator’s rent?
Unless you want them to relocate to Maraba and Nyanya.
“I proposed that we lower the number of Senators and Representatives, but they refused. So, if we need this many lawmakers in Nigeria, we should be able to provide for their needs as well,” he continued.
Okorocha, who talked on a wide range of subjects related to governance, unity, and development in Nigeria.
He also stated that the judiciary must be strengthened to drive citizens and leaders to be patriotic since this is where the Nigerian state’s grandeur rests.
The NUJ presented Senator Okorocha with the icon of the humanitarian award in recognition of his services to the emancipation of Nigerian children through his foundation.