Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has declined assent to the bill seeking pension for former lawmakers from the state as proposed and passed by the Assembly.
This comes after widespread outrage and protest from civil society groups over reports that the bill was set to be passed today.
Mr. Daniel Iworiso-Markson, the State Commissioner for Information, in a statement in Yenagoa on Monday, said Governor Dickson conveyed the decision to decline assent to the bill in a letter to the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Mr Konbowei Benson.
The Governor had earlier held a consultations meeting with the House of Assembly members in his country home, Toru-Orua, in Sagbama local government area, where he stated his reason for declining assent to the bill.
According to the statement, the governor realized that the bill was inconsistent with Section 124 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.
He said that he was of the view that the State Assembly lacked the powers to expand the categories of public servants who should be entitled to pension.
The Governor added that he was guided in the decision by the principle that government should not be for a select class of the privileged in the society.
He said that the lawmakers and indeed the Nigerian populace would attest to the fact that all decisions of his administration were guided by the strong urge to protect the public interest and promote the general good.