By TOM CHIAHEMEN, Abuja
Minister of Special Duties & Inter-governmental Affairs, Senator George Akume, has extricated himself from the raging controversy over alleged collection of pension in millions of Naira by former Nigerian governors from 1999 to date.
In a statement he issued in Abuja on Sunday and made available to NATIONAL ACCORD, Senator Akume said “I have not collected pension as ex-governor.”
The short statement, personally signed by Akume, reads:
Since the landmark judgment by Justice Oluremi Oguntoyibo of the Federal High Court in Lagos on the issue of ex governor’s pensions last week, I have been inundated with calls from concerned family members, friends and well-wishers.
My name has appeared in many media platforms as a beneficiary of the bogus and controversial pension package.
I want to make it abundantly clear that I have not been paid one kobo from such a pension scheme since I left the Governor’s office and won elections to become a Senator from 2007 – 2019. I have also not received the pay since I became a Minister in 2019.
The plain truth is that the Benue State House of Assembly never enacted a law granting such pay to ex-governors and other public officers. There is therefore no basis in law for such payments to be made to me and they have never been made.”
Senator Akume’s claim could not be immediately verified from the Office of the Accountant-General of Benue state.