Federal House of Pork

I saw this story  in the papers a couple of days ago and I was exasperated yet again.

N4m was apparently dispensed to each of the 360 members of the Federal House of Representatives to help them celebrate the christimas and sallah festivals in 2008.

Firstly, why should each lawmaker get N2m to celebrate EACH festival? I accept we are a multi religious society but surely this cannot be taken to mean people now practice more than 1 religion?
You are either christian or muslim, so a christian lawmaker should not be paid N2m to celebrate sallah.

But the more disgraceful aspect of the whole story is that the lawmakers threw a hissy fit when they discovered the repayment of the apparent loan had been taken from their salaries.
According to the lawmakers, they thought the N4m had been a gift.

Gift from who?

They also argued that the House returned N2bn to the Federal Government relating to money unspent from their allocation last year.
Now, there are 360 members of the House….so at N4m each, this ‘gift’ had cost N1.4bn.

Oh, I get it now…..if you manage to save N2bn for the Federal Republic of Nigeria, it is reasonable to expect that the government will instantly return N1.4bn to you as a reward for your troubles.
That’s a 70% finder’s fee…..nice work if you can find it.

It’s not a lot of fun being a Nigerian these days.

By my estimation, Nigeria is still stuck somewhere in the 1990s in terms of the level of thinking of public officials.

The Federal House of Representatives has now become a den of ex-419ers, bombastic grammarians, illiterates and an assorted company of characters who will only accept personal enrichment as the only marker for the success of their sojourn in Abuja.

To them, Nigeria has become the pig from which every ounce of pork must be extracted for consumption.

Good luck to them.
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