A former Ogun State Governor, Chief Olusegun Osoba has distanced himself from alleged outrageous amounts received by some state governors as pension.
He said that his pension is in compliance with what is set by the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).
Speaking with journalists in his Ikoyi, Lagos residence over the weekend, Osoba disclosed that his monthly pension since leaving the post of governor of the state in 2003 has been N676,000, which he said cannot fuel his car monthly.
He added that the administration of Otunba Gbenga Daniel stopped payment of his entitlements until some top traditional rulers prevailed on him to resume the payment.
He said the N676,000 pension “does not even cover the cost of fuelling my car in a month. The tax that I pay to Ogun State yearly is in millions when you look at the balance sheet. I am putting more into the coffer of Ogun State than what I am taking from the state.
“I will only speak for myself. I cannot comment on others unless I have facts and figures indicating what they are collecting with what they are collecting in their various appointive or elective offices now.
“If I am holding any appointive office, I will rather collect all my entitlements because the N676,000 I am collecting from Ogun State cannot sustain me.”
He added that while the RMAFC made provision for changing of car for each former state governor and deputy governor every three years, he has not benefitted in almost nine years.
He said the last time his car was changed was when he turned 70 years almost nine years ago.
“If the issue of car is covered under the law, it is their right and entitlement. Let us be honest with ourselves, in the 1999 Constitution, former presidents and governors are not by law allowed to hold any office with any multinational company or conglomerates,” he added.
The former governor further stated that the government “can change a car as recommended by the RMAFC, but not a fleet of cars. That is too much. Changing a car once in a while is not too much, though I have never benefited from this provision.”
Stressing that the state government had not given him the privilege of a change of car since his 70th birthday, he added that the government “has not given me that privilege since the last 15 years.
“I do not mind because the way any governor lays his bed today is the way he will sleep on it tomorrow. If they leave office and ask for what they do not give to me, I will raise the alarm and fault them.
“Like my medical treatment. I know how much I have spent, but nobody asked me. A lot of prominent Nigerians have asked me to demand it. But I refused to make such demand. I do not want anything scandalous.
“For example, I had major health challenges last year, which led to my travelling to the United Kingdom for medical treatment. Between May and December, I was in and out of different hospitals.
“But I am happy that I had successful surgeries. I do not use recommended glasses anymore, which has been part of me for over 70 years. I paid £20,000 deposit in one of the hospitals and by January 1 this year, I paid the £10,000 balance for the treatment.
“The total cost of my treatment was nearly £100,000, but I refused to put the burden on the neck of Ogun State. As a former governor my health is part of their problem and if I die today, the state will bury me.
“But I just did not bother myself. Since the state government did not ask me about the medical procedure, when they knew what I went through, I didn’t bother them with the details. What I cannot afford in my private life I would not go for it in any public office I find myself.”