Pensioners protest in Ogun State, reject government proposed N500m quarterly gratuity
Pensioners in Ogun State under the shelter of Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP), staged a peaceful protest on Tuesday, against the N500 million gratuity settlement proposed by the State Government.
The State Government had earlier signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MOU) with representatives
of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) to earmark N500m for the clearance of gratuities of pensioners.
The protesting pensioners held placards with various inscriptions on it: “We say a big no to the killers of pension reform”, “Gratuities are not meant for burial expenses,” “33.4% pension increment is statutory, implement it now”, ” N5,000 minimum pension is humiliating, increase our pension”, “Pay our gratuity to provide succour for our jobless children”, “Reserve the obnoxious pension bill now”, N2billion annual releases takes 34 years to offer N68billion debt, so a 60 years pensioner will take gratuity at 94 years. Abomination”
According to he Chairman of the NUP, Comrade Waheed Olayiwola Oloyede, the union rejected the proposal of Governor Dapo Abiodun to release N500million quarterly to clear outstanding gratuities, suggesting release of N1billion monthly as against the N500million.
“We demand for immediate payment of gratuities for State retirees from 2014 to date and Local Government retirees from September 2011 to date,” Oloyede said per Vanguard.
“Although the government has agreed to make a quarterly release of N500,000,000, monthly from January, 2021. This proposal is not acceptable to us as it would take 34 years to offset the outstanding N68billion arrears, rather we would suggest N1billion monthly release by the government.
“We demand for immediate implementation of the provisions of the circular on 33.4% increase in pension that was issued in 2010. We also demand for Conventional Review/Increase in pension in consonance with the provision of section 210 (3) of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.
“It is unfortunate that salaries and wages had been reviewed severally without pension review.
“It is very disheartening that majority of pensioners are on N5,000 monthly pension in Ogun State, an amount which is not enough to feed the dogs of an elite in one day. This is the reason we have been calling for pension review /increase in the state.
“Having served our dear State diligently and meritoriously to the best of our abilities for 35 years or thereabout, we do not deserve this worst humiliation from the unconcerned politicians who spent only few years, take full pay and disengage with mouthwatering severance allowances.
“We call on Governor Dapo Abiodun to do the needful now and don’t allow himself to be used by psychopants to bring his government to disrepute. It is also pertinent to call on Mr Governor not to indulge in communication gap between the unions and the government.”