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Okupe tasks Sagay on executive’s running cost

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Former Senior Special Assistant to former President Goodluck Jonathan on Public Affairs, Mr. Doyin Okupe.

Former Presidential Spokesman, Dr. Doyin Okupe has challenged Prof. Itse Sagay, Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Anti-Corruption (PACAC), to carry out his threat to reveal the details of the running cost of the principal officers of the federal legislature but added that he should equally reveal those of members of the executive arm.

This is sequel to the reaction of PACAC chairman to the revelations by Senator Shehu Sani that each member of the upper legislative chamber were collecting over N13 million as monthly running cost while principal officers even collected much more.

In a statement yesterday, Okupe also said failure by Sagay to give correct figures about the running cost of all top members of the Buhari government in the executive and legislature should be taken up by the National Assembly and that each day he fails to carry out his threat, his credibility will continue to wane.

“I find the threat by Professor Sagay on allowances and running cost of the leadership of the National Assembly very interesting. It will aid our fight for transparency in public affairs.

However, he should not be selective. For us to take him seriously, he should include the details of the running costs of the office of the President, Vice President, Ministers, Special Advisers, heads of government agencies, parastatals and even himself.

After all, the salaries, allowances and running costs come from the same public coffers.

“He should tell the world how much he is paid, how much he spends on his numerous junketing abroad, his allowances, honoraria and others, including the ones paid for by international donor agencies.

“For Prof. Sagay to say that the country would explode if he gives out certain figures is inciting, particularly, at a volatile and tensed period as we have now in the country. I believe the President owes this country a duty to call this man to order.

“It will also be interesting if Sagay can tell Nigerians what the achievements of his committee are in the last 30 months that it has been using government money. Or is the committee set up just for the purpose of abusing and attacking the National Assembly?

“With the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) rating recently released by Transparency International (TI), it does appear that Sagay’s committee has neither helped Nigeria nor the President who set up the committee and funded it with tax-payers’ money. Mr. Sagay should sit down with members of his committee to work seriously in developing position papers and policies that will actually help the anti-corruption war and make it more effective,” Okupe stated.


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