Senate President Ahmad Lawan yesterday spoke on the controversy over salaries and allowances of members of the National Assembly.

He said contrary to allegations of “jumbo pay,” the National Assembly is grossly underfunded in Nigeria compared to other presidential democracies.

The Senate President, who was guest lecturer at the maiden edition of the “Distinguished Parliamentarians Lecture, 2021,” organised by the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), in Abuja, said the budget of the National Assembly is one of the lowest in the world.

Speaking on the theme: “The legislature, legislative mandate and the people – The reality and the public perception”, Lawan reflected on the misconceptions, budget of the National Assembly and constituency projects.

He also spoke about the corruption, stigmatisation and negative characterisation of the National Assembly as a “rubber stamp,” and purchase of operational vehicles for legislators.

On the National Assembly budget, Lawan said: “This is perhaps one of the most persistent and vexatious issues that has dented the image of the National Assembly in Nigeria, with widespread presumptions that the budget of the National Assembly is not known.