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Okonjo-Iweala Sued Over Refusal To Reveal Salaries Of Political Office-Holders

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Mrs. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, who is the Minister of finance has been dragged before the Abuja Division of the Federal
High Court. She allegedly refused to grant access to details of salaries and emoluments that political office holders receive from the federal budget per annum…

A non-governmental organisation, Centre for Social Justice, through its lawyer, Mr. Nnajiaka Kingsley, is praying the court to issue an order of mandamus, compelling the minister to reveal the details of
salaries and emoluments of civil servants as distinct from that of political office holders. According to Vanguard, the plaintiff, further prayed the court to declare that the action of the Minister in denying it access to the information, by ignoring an application that was made to her since the 3rd of February 2014, without explanation as to why such details could not be made public, amounted to an infringement of
the applicant’s right guaranteed and protected by section 1(1) of the FOI Act, 2011. Consequently, it urged the court to award N500, 000 as damages against the Finance Minister over her continued refusal to disclose the information sought from her office.

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The plaintiff contended that section 48(1) of the Fiscal Responsibility Act stipulated that the Federal Government should ensure that its fiscal and financial
affairs are conducted accordingly, ensure full and timely disclosure and
wide publication of all transactions and decisions involving revenues, expenditures and their implications for its finances.

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