• Thursday, April 18, 2024
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CJN to get jumbo raise as Reps pass bill increasing judicial officers salaries

Chief Justice, Ariwoola set to swear in 11 Supreme Court Justices

The House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a bill for an upward review of the salaries, allowances, and fringe benefits of judicial office holders in the country, which provides a monthly package of N5.39 million for the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN).

The executive bill which passed third reading at the lower chamber also provides a total package of  N4.21 million for  Justices of the Supreme Court, while the President of the Court of Appeal is to earn a total monthly package of N4. 48 million.

In addition,  Justices of the Court of Appeal are to earn a total monthly package of N3.73 million, while the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, President of the National Industrial Court, Chief Judge of the FCT High Court, Grand Khadi, FCT Sharia Court of Appeal, President of Customary Court of Appeal, Chief Judge state High Court and Grand Khadi of State Sharia Court of Appeal and President of state Customary Court of Appeal are to earn a monthly package of N3.53 million.

Other allowances not embedded in the total monthly package include leave allowances, estacode per night of $2000 when applicable, duty tour allowances when applicable, severance gratuity of N80.78 million after successful completion of tenure as well as an option motor vehicle loan to be repaid before the expiration of tenure.

Before the bill, in the existing salaries and allowances according to the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), the Chief Justice of Nigeria earns about N560,662 monthly, comprising his basic salary and some allowances. The sum includes N280,331 basic salary, N70,082 as personal assistant allowance, N140,165 as hardship allowance, and N70,082 as outfit allowance

Similarly, each justice of the Supreme Court and the President of the Court of Appeal earn about N908,273 monthly, comprising a basic salary of N280,331 and some allowances. They also have access to annual accommodation allowances of N4.95 million each and N247.7 million annual leave allowance.

The basic salary of Judges of the Court of Appeal and Chief Judge of a Federal High Court is N1.99 million and therefore receive N166,285 monthly.

Meanwhile,  President Bola Tinubu has asked the Senate to consider and pass the executive bill seeking an upward review of judicial officers’ salaries and allowances.

The President’s request on the Bill entitled “Judicial office holders, salaries and allowances, etc, bill 2024″ was contained in a letter read by the Godswill Akpabio, Godswill  Akpabio during the plenary on Wednesday.

Tinubu, in his letter, said the executive bill will generate a new legal framework for the remuneration of judicial officers to improve their welfare.

The President argued that the bill would promote the independence capacity of the Nigerian judiciary system.

“The judicial office holders, salaries and allowances, etc, bill 2024 seeks to prescribe salaries, allowances, and benefits for judicial officers to end the prolonged stagnation in their remuneration and to reflect contemporary social economic realities.

“The bill which establishes a new legal framework for the remuneration of judicial officers will also ensure significant improvement in the welfare capacity and independence of the judiciary,” Tinubu said in the letter.

“While I hope that the judicial office holders, salaries and allowances, etc, bill 2024 will be carefully, yet expeditiously considered and passed by the Senate.

“Please accept, distinguish senate president, and distinguish senators the assurances of my highest esteem,” the letter further read.