Budget defence: Malami’s ministry pays lawyers N258m as robe allowance

Abubakar Malami, the minister of justice and the attorney-general of the federation (AGF) has disclosed that N285m was paid annually to 860 lawyers in the ministry as robe allowance.

According to Malami, each of the counsel was getting N300,000 annually.

This was made known by the AGF when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Judiciary and Human Rights and Legal Matters to defend the 2022 budget defence of the ministry, during the week.

However, Senator Emmanuel Orker-Jev (Benue North-West), raised concern about personnel cost in the ministry.

He demanded details of the total number of lawyers in the ministry.

The minister explained that the total number of lawyers in the ministry were about 860, adding that they were entitled to N300,000 each as robe allowance .

Malami said, “860 lawyers are entitled to N300,000 annually as robe allowance,”.

Orker-Jev further asked the minister how often robe allowance was paid.

The minister responded that it was annual payment and that it was a tradition.

The senator who was surprised, said, “I used a robe more than 10 years.”

The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, however, explained that the money was paid to make the lawyers presentable in court.

He said, “The money was paid to the lawyers to make sure that they are presentable in court.”

The ministry proposed N11.8 bn for 2022 budget.

The personnel cost was N3.9bn, overhead cost (exclusive of legal services) – N2.4bn; legal services – N2bn and capital budget (N3.5bn).

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