Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP), Adamawa State Chapter, has lamented the non-payment of over N27 billion owed pensioners by both the state and local government in Adamawa. The pensioners alleged that the current administration in the state has not paid any pensioner their full gratuity since inception.
This was disclosed in Yola by Samson Almuru, Chairman of NUP Adamawa State Chapter, while speaking during the Celebration of the Pensioners Day 2020. He further disclosed that over 200 pensioners have died waiting to receive their pension between 2019 to date.
He said ‘’Since the inception of this administration no pensioner can claim to have received his full gratuity, this should not be the case. The union is aware that some pensioners were given N50,000 – N200,000 as part of their gratuity and tagged assistance.” The government is owing pensioners over N27 billion i.e. both State & L.G. pensioners.
“Between 2019 to date, over 200 pensioners died waiting to receive their pension benefits. They waited to receive their gratuity payments from the state government after their retirement from the services of the government but the governor failed them.”
“We decided to celebrate this year’s Annual Pension Year at this time as a mark to pray to God and thank Him that we are not dead but still alive but many of our colleagues are dead and gone. The essence of World Pensioners Day is rather painful, those who contributed to the development of the state are neglected because they are retired.”
“We as pensioners have done everything possible to even meet with His Excellency, Governor Fintiri or to make the government pay us our pensions but to no avail therefore we have resolved to offer special prayer so that they may listen to us.’’
“The last time pension was reviewed in Adamawa State was sometimes in 2003. Going by the pension law, which states that pensions shall be reviewed upward each time there is an increase in salaries of workers or every five years, which was never implemented up to now. The minimum pension in the state is N4,000.
Replying to the pensioners, the Head of Service, Amos Edgar, said that the present administration is “working tirelessly to see that pension matters are resolved in the State. Mr Edgar represented by the permanent secretary, administration, Ahmad Dada, told the aggrieved pensioners that, “this government is so concerned with your plight and is working assiduously to put a smile on your faces by paying the N27 billion owed by both state and local government councils.”
He further explained that Governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, on assuming office, approved an upward review of the monthly allocation for payment of gratuity of retired local government workers from N3.5 million to N15 million and this has ensured steady off-setting of the arrears of the workers’ entitlement.
He revealed that the governor who kept to his promise, constituted a technical committee that verified the number of pensioners that the government owed gratuity and pension, and the report was submitted to the governor.
He added that since the coming of the Fintiri led administration, the state and local government pension board has been responsive and has paid those who retired from 2007 based on medical and health grounds.
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