– The House of Representatives said aides have no power to shut down the National Assembly
– The lawmakers said they will address the issue of their aides’ unpaid allowances
– They said some of their demands are not contained in the agreement
The House of Representatives has responded to threats by legislative aides attached to lawmakers to shut down the National Assembly over unpaid allowances put at N58 billion saying they lacked such powers.
Nigerian Tribune reports that Hon Namdas Abdulrazak who is the chairman house committee on media and publicity said “based on the letters of employment given to the legislative aides as temporary and unpensionable staff on the recommendations of their principals, the issues of non-payment of Duty Tour Allowances, DTA, being complaint of was not contained in their conditions of engagements and as such it was not a matter of right but privilege.”
He said: “actually, most of the members were not aware of theirs. Aides’ grievances until the protest became issues in the Media and their protest aired on Television Stations, if they had discussed their grievances with us their principals, we would have taken the matter up with the management.
“Going through the letter of appointments issued out to them and their demands, we discovered that they were not entitled to the demands as a matter of right but as a matter of privilege they can get some payments when they embark on tour and such will be calculated based on Kilometres per hour and grade levels as applicable in the civil service.
“They are our Aides, they have been working for us and they have been working with us amicably since we came and so if they tell us their problems, we will into them in accordance with the rules of their engagement based on our recommendations and iron them out amicably and not through confrontation.”
On the threat to shut down the NASS if their demands were not met in a matter of days, he dismissed this, saying that the aides lacked such power since they were temporary staff whose appointment could be terminated at any given time.
Meanwhile, the police have released a member of the House of Representatives, Abubakar Lado, from detention after reportedly spending three days at the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad facility in Abuja.
The Punch reports that Abubakar Lado was set free on Wednesday, October 10 after the House of Representatives passed a resolution for his immediate release.