Pension Act: National Assembly Clerk pledges support for state assemblies

Clerk to National Assembly, Mr Amos Ojo, on Friday pledged to ensure that Clerks of Nigerian Legislatures enjoyed ‘terminal benefits’ as being enjoyed by Permanent Secretaries.

Ojo said this would be achieved through canvassing an amendment to Pension Act.

He made pledge at meeting of Forum of Clerks of Nigeria Legislatures (FOCON) held in Abuja.

Clerk, who raised concern on non-inclusion of members of FOCON to benefit from the ‘terminal benefits’ said that he would do everything possible to ensure their inclusion.

Pension Act does not make provision for ‘terminal benefits’ for Clerks of Nigerian Legislatures as it is being enjoyed by permanent secretaries and head of service in executive arm of government.

“Who says that there is no absolute need for us to make a case of urgent amendment, of Pension Act to accommodate FOCON members?

“It is a fact that some states in federation have put in place a policy of paying their ‘retired Clerks’ full salary for life, as it is being enjoyed by some permanent secretaries in executive arm of government.

“Therefore, we must be reminded on need for us to use this gathering, to urge states that have not started this policy to do so without delay,” he said.

Ojo urged participants, who are clerks to 36 state houses of assembly to see themselves as critical engines that must constantly oil huge machine of legislative business in the country.

“In this regard, we must not only sit up but must put on our thinking caps, to scientifically exploit gains of the recently passed financial autonomy to advance our democratic representation across the board in Nigeria.”

Also speaking, the Chairperson of Clerk to State Houses of Assembly, Mrs Lyna Ocholor, reiterated calls for an amendment to the Act to make clerks to state houses of assembly to be at par with permanent secretaries in the executive in terms of ‘life salaries’.

Ocholor, who is also the Clerk Delta State House of Assembly, noted that the Pension Act amendment was key to enjoying life after retirement.

“When you retire what happens? We want this meeting to be often to help,” she said. (NAN)