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N40bn life pension: Fayemi’s threatened lawsuit, a distraction, says SERAP

A human rights advocacy group, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, on Sunday described as unjustified the threat of legal action against it by a former governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi.
SERAP, which described Fayemi’s threat of lawsuit as an unhelpful distraction, maintained that it would not back down on its campaign for the abolition of state laws that allow ex-governor to earn life pensions.
The organisation said rather than threatening a lawsuit, Fayemi should join it to ensure that the life pensions being earned by ex-governors were redirected for the benefit of marginalised and disadvantaged Nigerians.
Fayemi had reportedly threatened a legal action against SERAP, for including his name among ex-governors, who are now ministers and lawmakers  that continue to earn governor’s emolument and life pension from their states.
But the organisation, which noted that it was during Fayemi’s tenure that life pension for ex-governors was legalised in Ekiti State, said it owed  Fayemi no apology, while describing his threatened lawsuit as an effort to undermine legitimate efforts to promote transparency.
SERAP said, “As a former pro-democracy activist, Dr. Fayemi is well-known to us but we do not agree with the accusation that our letter targets the minister or intends to embarrass him in any way shape or form.
“Our objectives remain to promote the abolition of those obnoxious states’ laws, which seek to allow former governors to receive life pensions either now or in the future when friendly governments are in place in their states, and to secure full recovery of public funds.