The Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, has declined assent to the bill seeking lifetime pension for lawmakers in the state as proposed and passed by the Assembly. The State Commissioner for Information, Mr. Daniel Iworiso-Markson, in a statement said the governor conveyed the decision to decline assent to the bill in a letter to the Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly on Monday.
The Governor held consultations with the Assembly members in his country home of Toru-Orua, where he explained his reason for declining assent. He said the bill was inconsistent with Section 124 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.
Governor Dickson said that he was of the view that the State Assembly lacked the powers to expand the categories of public servants who should be entitled to a pension.
He said that he had to withhold assent to the bill because the State which had lot of challenges in spite of its low internally generated revenue base and unstable earnings from the oil economy is the only state out of Nigeria’s thirty six states to come up with such a bill.