Members of the house of representatives have resolved to donate their salaries for two months to support the fight against coronavirus, according to Femi Gbajabiamila, the speaker.
In a video message on Tuesday, Gbajabiamila said the salary being forfeited to the federal government will be independent of the individual contributions the lawmakers may decide to make.
TheCable understands the monthly salary of each of the 360 members of the green chamber ranges from N600,000 to N1 million.
Senators and ministers earlier donated 50 percent of their salaries to the same cause.
The speaker said the money is meant to alleviate the hardship that their constituents face at this time of national emergency.
“We have in the house of representatives jointly committed to contributing one hundred per cent (100%) of our salaries for the next two months to the fight against COVID-19 in Nigeria,” Gbajabiamila said.
“Starting from March salary, the lawmakers’ donation will be transferred directly to the National Relief Fund account for the fight against COVID-19.
“Our contribution will support provisions for the welfare of front-line medical professionals and health workers, and other interventions to provide for the well-being of all Nigerians through these trying times.
“Accordingly, I have directed the clerk to the national assembly to see to it that all members’ salaries are transferred to the national relief fund for this month and the next.”
Gbajabiamila added that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should also make cash grants available to the 774 local government areas in the country to alleviate the suffering of the masses amid the pandemic.
He said the grant should be for the provision of food and other essentials to at-risk individuals and communities.
He also said relevant house committees have been mandated to oversee the distribution of items donated by local and foreign donors to ensure proper management.
“This crisis has exposed in the worst possible way the evident weaknesses of our health system,” the speaker added.
“After this is over and moving forward, we must do everything in our power to ensure that we will never again come upon a moment such as this, as ill-equipped as we are now.”
As of Tuesday morning, Nigeria has recorded 135 cases of the coronavirus out of which there two fatalities.