The Bayelsa State House of Assembly on Wednesday approved monthly life pensions for all present and past members of the legislature.
The controversial bill, sponsored by the leader of the House, Peter Akpe, which was passed on the floor of the House, approved N500,000 post-service monthly pension to the speakers of the assembly, while deputy speakers will receive N200,000. Members are to get N100,000.
The bill specifically provided that former lawmakers, including persons of Bayelsa origin who served in the old Rivers State, would enjoy life pensions for their services in the state as applicable to former presidents, vice-presidents, governors and deputy governors across the country.
To qualify for the speakership pension of N500, 000 monthly, the official must have served for two years and above.
It remains unclear whether Governor Seriake Dickson will sign the bill.
Meanwhile, Bayelsans have condemned the development, calling it a regressive move and a misplaced priority to further rob the people their common wealth.
A resident, Fidel Boboye, described the move as greed in the highest places and wondered why such political office holders with the wealth and money they had amassed still awarded life pensions to themselves.
Another resident Preye Alegbe, said: “Is this not too much for these persons even as there are many graduates out there without good jobs? Why can’t the legislature channel these legislations to areas where the younger generations can benefit more?”