The Kwara state government on Wednesday said Senate President, Bukola Saraki has returned all monies paid to him as pension back to the coffers of the state.
Activist and Human right lawyer, Femi Falana, had on Sunday challenged Saraki to return the pension he recieved from the state government since 2007.
He also asked him to return the house the state government bought for him in Abuja.
The secretary to the Kwara state government, Sola Isiaka
In a statement released on Wednesday, the Secretary to Kwara State Government (SSG), Alhaji Isiaka Gold, said the state government had received a refund of the pension for Saraki.
It read: “The attention of Kwara state government has been drawn to issues surrounding the payment of pensions to former governors of the state, especially the senate president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki, CON.
“As a result, the state government wish to make the following clarifications: That Dr Saraki, as a two-term governor, is entitled to pension as stipulated by the third schedule, Paragraph D (i) of the governor and deputy-governor ((payment of pension) Law, No. 12 of 2010 of Kwara state.
“That the said pension has been duly remitted to his account, like other former governors’, since he left office but when via a letter dated 20th August 2015 addressed to the state government, Dr Saraki requested that the payment of pension to his account be stopped and the amount already credited to the account be refunded to the government, the state government promptly complied.
“That the government not only stopped the payment of the said pension, the amount already paid into Dr Saraki’s account since he left office was deducted from the money owed to him as well as his other outstanding lawful entitlements.
“In view of the foregoing, it should be noted that neither the Kwara state government nor Dr Bukola Saraki violated the state pension law or any other law for that matter. The state pension law empowers the state government to pay pension to former governors of the state.”
The state government added that Saraki, on his own volition, “considered the morality of the situation in which the pension would put him since he is still a serving senator and chose to abandon his legal rights”.