Politicians across the African continent are some of the highest-earning individuals. They are mostly millionaires and billionaires who have made their money as a direct result of their involvement in politics. This is why there is always a fight to attain a political position in many countries across the continent.
Nigeria is one example of a place where politicians make big bucks. In addition to having first-hand information about where to invest money, they earn a huge salary for the offices they occupy, as can be seen through the salary of the Nigerian president. The salary of Nigeria’s first citizen shows that he is one of the highest salary earners in the country. This is despite the fact that the current incumbent implemented a 50% slash to his earnings and that of his vice. He, however, would still earn other allowances and entitlements that include vehicle maintenance, entertainment, house maintenance, accommodation, domestic staff, personal assistants, utility allowances, hardship allowance, wardrobe, etc. Other allowances include estacode, duty tour allowances, severance gratuity, and so on.
The Annual Salary Of The President Of Nigeria Is About N30 Million
Based on the salary breakdown given by the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission, the basic annual salary of the president of Nigeria is N30 million. In 2015, when former military head of state Muhammadu Buhari assumed office to serve as the 15th President of the country, he implemented a policy to slash his salary and that of his vice president by 50% to reflect the recent economic realities. Following the policy, his annual salary was reduced to about N14 million.
Allowances Of The President Of Nigeria
Apart from the Nigerian president’s basic salary, the country’s first citizen also has other allowances at different percentages that he is entitled to. According to the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission, the president is entitled to other 20 robust allowances and more.
1. Hardship Allowance
The president shouldering the burden of the country is to receive this allowance to enable the smooth running of the office. The hardship allowance adds to about 50% of the basic annual salary of the president which is N1,757,350.50. The basic monthly hardship allowance earned by the President is N146,446.04.
2. Consistency Allowance
This consistency allowance covers the president’s expenses as he moves from one place to the other. The consistency allowance is 250% of the total annual salary which is about N8,786,762.50. The President receives N732,230.08 monthly on consistency allowance.
3. Leave Allowance
This allowance is paid to empower the president to have some quality time off duty for a while. His Excellency is entitled to 10% of his basic salary as a leave allowance which amounts to N351,470.50.
4. Constituency Allowance
This allowance covers the President’s daily expenditures. This constitutes 250% of the total annual salary which sums up to N732,230.2 monthly and N8,786,762.4 annually.
5. Optional Vehicle Loan
This is one of the biggest entitlements in the Presidential Office which is 400% of the President’s annual salary. This amounts to N14,058,819.84, however, this loan must be repaid before leaving the office of the president.
6. Estacode Allowance
The estacode allowance covers the travel expenses of the president. The amount paid for this allowance is only determined by the president.
7. Duty Tour Allowance
The purpose of this allowance is to fund the duty travels embarked by the president which is subject to the discretion of the president.
8. Severance Gratuity
This is the most enticing part of the office of the president; it is the monetary benefit of the president which is paid on the completion of his tenure. This amounts to 300% of his annual salary which is N10,544,115.00.
9. Other Entitlements Of The President
Though many responsibilities await the president of the nation, huge benefits are also there the lighten the burden. Apart from the enlisted allowances, there are also other benefits to enjoy as the president of the country. These help in the smooth running of the presidential office and they are free as they are fully funded by the Federal Government.
These forms of benefits are personal assistant allowance, vehicle fueling/maintenance, domestic staff, entertainment, recess, medical, newspaper/periodicals, utilities, house maintenance, security, furniture, wardrobe, accommodation allowances, etc.
The Vice President’s Annual Salary Is Just Above N12 Million
The vice president receives an annual salary of about N12 million annually. His remuneration breakdown is as follows:
- The vice president receives a basic remuneration which amounts to N3,024,756.48 annually and N252,063.04 monthly.
- Hardship allowance sums up to N1,512,378.24 annually and N126,031.27 monthly which is 50% of his yearly salary.
- He receives a constituency allowance of 250% of his annual salary N7,561,891.20 annually and N630,157.60 monthly.
Breakdown Of The Vice President’s Other Allowances
For the other allowances of the vice president, a total of 250% of his annual salary is to be paid. The breakdown is as follows:
- Vehicle and Maintenance Allowance: He is entitled to 75%, that is N9,000,000 of his annual basic salary for vehicles and maintenance. This can be paid according to the choice of the vice president that is if he chooses to own and maintain a car.
- Personal Assistant Allowance: The office of the vice president is one of the busiest offices. To work effectively, a personal assistant is needed. 25% of the basic salary is allocated for the personal assistant of the president which amounts to N3,000,000.
- Utility Allowance: As the vice president, payment of utility is still part of his duty as the number two patriotic citizen of Nigeria. 30% of his yearly salary goes to utility bills and this amounts to N3,600,000.
- Entertainment Allowance: There is a saying that all work and no play will make Jack a dull boy. This fits in perfectly for the vice president as he shoulders some of the issues of the nation. N5,400,000 which is 45% of the yearly salary is mapped out for entertainment.
- Domestic Staff Allowance: As the vice president is busy seeing to the affairs of the nation, some people are responsible for the organization of his home. N9,000,000 that is 75% of his annual salary is set out for the payment of his domestic staff.
- Other Expenses: 530% allowance is set out for some of his other expenses. This allowance is to be received separately for the following:
1. Monitoring Allowance: Security is paramount for a public figure like the vice president. 20% of his salary is received for monitoring which is N2,400,000 annually.
2. Accommodation Allowance: One of the necessities of man is housing. N24,000,000 which is 200% of the yearly salary is set out for the accommodation and housing of the vice president.
3. Furniture Allowance: The beauty of a home is its furniture and decorations. 300% of the vice president’s salary is set out for his household furniture.
4. Leave Allowance: Taking a break from work helps keep the body, soul, mind, and spirit together. This is a period when we spend quality time with our loved ones. In this period, shopping, vacations, and tours are not left out. 10% of the yearly salary is paid for leave allowance which is N1,200,00.
5. Motor Vehicle Loan: This is optional, about 400% of his annual salary which amounts to N12,126,290. The motor vehicle loan is paid back on the successful completion of his tenure.
6. The VP’s duty tour is at N35,000 per night and estacode (travel allowance) is $900 per night. Upon successful completion of his tenure, 300% is paid to him as a severance gratuity. Some other allowances that are provided by the federal government are newspapers and periodicals, medicals, wardrobes, etc.
The President and Vice President Are Not The Only Nigerian Politicians That Earn Robustly
There is no denying that the salaries of politicians are robust and mouthwatering. The standard minimum wage in Nigeria is N30,000 which amounts to N360,000 annually. As you would expect, this policy has nothing to do with the political elite as most Nigerian politicians, from the federal level down to the local government level, earn massive salaries.
With the minimum wage in Nigeria, it would take an earner of N30,000 a month about 82 years to earn one month’s salary (N30 million) of the president of Nigeria. Meanwhile, Nigerian legislators are among the highest-paid politicians in the world.
There Should Be a Slash In The Salaries of Politicians
The jumbo amount paid to legislators in Nigeria has got Nigerians demanding a slash on their salaries. The minimum wage in the country does not reflect the salaries of Nigerian politicians as they earn robustly why the civil servants are underpaid or owed for months. The least salary of a politician is about N1.8 million whereas civil servants, police, and the military who do the tedious jobs don’t earn up to that. All these have contributed to the demand by the Nigerian citizens which seems impossible as nothing has been done concerning that.
Most Nigerians gave their opinion that every legislator should be serving Nigeria part-time which is under section 63 and section 104 of the 1999 constitution. In other words, they should be paid according to their number of plenary sittings. However, all legislators should have a business of their own and should only sit whenever the need for law-making or important national issues arises. For the fact that they are required to serve as part-time, they do not deserve gratuities, severance entitlements, or pension.
Nigerians vent their anger mostly on senators who don’t utilize the funds meant for the development of infrastructure in their various states. In as much as huge funds are allocated for the development of the nation; the public education sector is still in an appalling state and underfunded; railways, roads, and airports are in decrepit conditions; government factories that ought to provide employment opportunities and funds for the country are in a sorry state, completely abandoned, or privatized; most areas in Nigeria have no electricity and those that have are unstable; the health system remains in a terrible condition.
Citizens of the country have called out politicians for putting the country in a terrible state and running out to other developed countries with their families for healthcare, education, and others. On this part, the president is not left out as he is always traveling to London for healthcare while the hospitals in Nigeria are unequipped.
The citizens of Nigeria also criticize the long convoy used by Governors and their deputies following the amount allocated for vehicles and maintenance and unpaid salaries. They have further stated that the approved allocated amounts are not up to a single car in their fleet of cars and that they are embezzling the funds allocated for the development of the state for their luxurious lifestyle.
The reason for all the critics is that the Nigerian politicians are not serving the public well although Nigeria is the supposed giant of Africa. Not only that, Nigeria is rich in crude oil and many other mineral resources that are enough to develop the country. This nonchalant service has given rise to poverty, increased crime rate, careless deaths due to poor infrastructural developments, and health system. All these increased the rate of migration of Nigerian citizens to developed countries in search of greener pastures. This remains the dream of every Nigerian youth if the embezzling of funds and the wealth of the nation is not circulated well.
A Comparison of the Salary Of the President Of Nigeria To That Of Other Countries
In comparison to what other presidents of big African nations earn, the Nigerian President is among the lowest-paid presidents with a salary that is under $70,000. In South Africa, the president earns $223,500 per annum while the Kenyan president earns $192,200. The Ghanaian president earns $76,000. The president of Nigeria is, however, earning at the same level as some underdeveloped countries like Mali, whose president earns $68,900, and Mozambique whose president earns $46,800 annually.
Taking a look at developed countries like the United States of America, the president of America earns an annual salary of $400,000 with an expense account of $50,000. It is seen that the salary of the president of the USA is far much higher than the Nigerian president’s salary. The pales when compared to the salary of the Chinese leader. The President of China earns lesser than the Nigerian president with a salary of $22,000.