Security operatives attached to the Aso Rock Presidential Villa, including 95 presidential body guards, are grumbling over non-payment of their 13-month special allowance.
They are officers of the Nigerian Army, the Department of Security Service (DSS), the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), the Federal Fire Service and the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC).
Since President Muhammadu Buhari assumed office on May 29, 2015, the State House security staff, numbering about 1,400 say they have not received their special allowance otherwise known as Risk Cautious Allowance (RCA).
The administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan was said to be paying each of the senior security personnel at the Villa N30,000; and the junior ones, N25,000 as monthly special allowance.
Findings, however, revealed that even though Jonathan’s administration had reviewed the special allowance upward, the last time the Villa security staff received it was in March, 2015.
But the officers currently securing the nation’s seat of power said it beat their imagination that they could be owed their RCA under the administration of President Buhari, a retired general.
The security personnel, who craved anonymity, lamented that several months after President Muhammadu Buhari had ordered the payment of the allowance, “nothing has been done.”
One of them, a policeman, told our correspondent that he was surprised at the non-payment of the special allowance “especially because the president is from a security background.
The Presidency explained that “clean and lawful” means of paying the special allowance was being devised, as directed by President Buhari.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, told our correspondent that on assumption of office, Buhari’s administration discovered that the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) was paying the special allowance without following due process.
Shehu said: “Under the Muhammadu Buhari administration, you are not going to have the NSA going to the Central Bank or the NNPC to fetch money to share around. That is not going to happen.”
He said the president had, to that extent, directed the incumbent NSA, General Babagana Munguno, “to devise clean and lawful means of paying those allowances as part of the overall effort to clean up that office.”