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Revive pension board, retirees tell Fubara

By Gloria Nwafor
31 August 2023   |   3:06 am
Fubara. Pix:Premium Times. Rivers State pensioners have urged Governor Similaye Fubara to beam searchlights on the state's pension board to save lives of pensioners who are already on the edge. A group, under the aegis of concerned pensioners in the state, in an open letter, said the governor's investigation was urgently needed as they alleged…

Fubara. Pix:Premium Times.

Rivers State pensioners have urged Governor Similaye Fubara to beam searchlights on the state’s pension board to save lives of pensioners who are already on the edge.

A group, under the aegis of concerned pensioners in the state, in an open letter, said the governor’s investigation was urgently needed as they alleged that some greedy staff of the pension board requested a percentage up to forty percent in cash before a retiree receives his or her payment slip.
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While seeking the governor’s intervention, they also alleged that some citizens are owed as much as N18 million each.

They alleged that some civil servants, who retired in 2010 and after, are still on the gratuity queue.

The group alleged that the verifying officers were not helping matters, as they intentionally delayed files, whose owners were not “greasing palms”, thereby further extending the payment of such retirees.

“They have now resorted to a cash and carry system, which allows retirees willing to part with a given percentage of the gratuity to be paid before those in line.

“We have sacrificed enough. It has become a racket in the pension board, civil or parastatal. We need your intervention in whatever form to save our souls as many of our colleagues have died, while some are bedridden and waiting to die in the excruciating economy of Nigeria.

“Let there be a network for retirees as many have no other source of income and are unemployable and frail due to ill health and or malnutrition,” the group said.

Recalling the pain of an average retiree and pensioners of Rivers state civil service, the concerned pensioners added: “The pain and resultant sense of loss dates back to the receding years of former governor Chibuike Amaechi, when the funds started drying up. The promotion stopped coming and all civil servants in Rivers state started losing their expected additions to their salary both annually and triannually as the case may be. You are a witness and partaker of the episodes.