BY BODE GBADEBO, Abuja
The National Assembly Legislative Aides Forum (NASSLAF) has called for equal treatment of its members with those of the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria (PASAN), arguing that both categories of legislative workers are employees of the National Assembly Service Commission, (NASC).
NASSLAF chairman, Alh. Salisu Usman Zuru, made call during a courtesy call on the chairman of NASC, Engr. Ahmed Amshi, in Abuja on Wednesday, where he appealed to the Commission to correct the anomaly.
According to a statement signed by NASSLAF public relations officer, Abdul Lauya, he said NASC chairman, Engr. Amshi, expressed deep shock when Comrade Zuru revealed that Legislative Aides were remunerated with the 2010 Consolidated Legislative Salary Structure (CONLESS) instead of the revised 2018 version being enjoyed by members of PASAN.
Zuru equally made case for improved capacity building, early payment of severance packages as well as better welfare and other incentives in order to attract the best brains to service the nation’s apex lawmaking body.
He further argued that as “lubricants that oil the wheels of effective and efficient Legislative delivery,” there was the need to create a pool of Chartered Legislative Aides who have passed rigorous and relevant examinations by the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), where Legislators can draw from in order to ensure continuity and enhanced service delivery.
NASSLAF chairman also harped on the lingering outstanding salary arrears owed its members, and urged the Commission to intervene so that those that have been paid can be paid as quickly as possible.
In his response, Engr Amshi, who expressed shock at the plight of NASSLAF members, said that Legislative Aides are bonafide employees of the Commission and must not be treated otherwise.
Also at the interactive session, the Director Zonal Offices and Legislative Aides, Malami Ahmed, corroborated the submissions of NASSLAF chairman to the effect that, the Commission still uses the 2010 CONLESS for Legislative Aides, but could not offer justifications for such imbalance.
Engr. Amshi therefore directed that the anomaly be corrected immediately.
On the vexed issue of salary arrears, the chairman of the Commission promised to interface with Management of the National Assembly to resolve the issue.
NASC was established by an Act of the National Assembly and charged with the responsibility to appoint, promote, dismiss and exercise disciplinary control over staff of the National Assembly.
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