A video that shows a Gambia politician and parliamentarian pleading with her colleagues honorable members to oppose pay raises has gone viral.
In the now-viral video, Hon. Fatoumatta Touma Njie, the national assembly representative for Banjul South, requests that the 2023 budget estimate—which shows an increase in lawmakers’ salaries—be rejected by her fellow lawmakers on November 24, 2022.
The planned 2023 budget for National Assembly Services shows a total of D36,715,057.95, ($593 134,99) up from D27,788,736.00 ($448 929,48) allowed in the 2022 budget. This indicates that the estimate is asking for a D8,926,321 ($144 205,50) extra to the 2022 authorized estimate, and that figure does not include their allowances.
Nigerian youths, in particular, urged that leaders in Nigeria follow the woman’s example after the video caught the attention of so many people across Africa.
The video’s transcript of what the honorable said is provided below;
- “I feel ashamed to call myself an honourable member. I gave myself for service. I did not give myself for poor people to feed me and my family. When I saw this, I felt embarrassed. I did not want to come to this budget session because I said to myself there is no need – because we are just sharing the cake in our pocket, going home feeding ourselves.”
- “Even if I go to the Constitution, it says that; we shouldn’t deliberately enrich ourselves. And increasing our salaries is deliberately enriching ourselves and that is an embarrassment. I think as a National Assembly, we should not accept any salary increment,” Hon. Fatoumatta Touma Njie said at the budget session.
- “Not only that, but to see the responsibility allowance, residential allowance, the robbing allowance and all those for the representatives of the people. It is embarrassing, for me to go back to my poor constituency and tell them that the meagre resources of this country – I’m paid that much at your expense. I took an oath to serve and to give back to my society – not to enrich myself,” Hon. Njie said.
According to data gathered by Mandy News, the estimated budget for 2023 allocates D1,560,000 to the Speaker from D658,534.00 in 2022 (an increase of D901,466); D716,430 to the Deputy Speaker from D551,100 in 2022 (an increase of D165,330); and D32,448,000 to the National Assembly Members from D24,960,000 in 2022 (an increase of D7,448,000), excluding the majority and minority leaders, whose annual
Watch the now viral video below.
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