There has been a big outcry in Nigeria against the Senate’s decision to buy new SUVs for all 108 senators, 36 at a time, at an alleged cost of 36m naira ($181,000) each.
In a country groaning under dwindling revenues from oil, its major export, with President Muhammadu Buhari claiming that the cost of governance has to be reduced, the excesses of legislators has been a critical source of discontent.
But the president is in no position to call the senators to order because, according to a presidency source, Buhari took delivery of a brand new fleet of cars in November last year. This included top of the range SUVs, BMWs and Mercedes limousines.
The presidency also acquired a brand new jet, despite earlier claims last year that Buhari had ordered the sale of nine presidential jets.
The senators must wonder, “if luxury travel is good enough for the president, why not us?” Expect members of the House of Representatives to order their own luxury cars pretty soon. Stuff that would benefit ordinary Nigerians such as stable power supply, reasonably-priced petrol at the pumps, decent infrastructure, etc always seem to take time to deliver. While huge perks for the politricksters are delivered “with immediate effect and automatic alacrity” (apologies to Chief Eleyinmi).