Pensioners explain threat to boycott election
The state chapter of the Nigerian Union of Pensioners (NUP) has clarified conflicting reports that it threatened to mobilise against the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The union’s spokesman, Vincent Aigbodion, said it did not isolate any particular party but threatened to boycott the entire polls, if their pension arrears are not paid.
According to Aigbodion, the NUP does not owe its allegiance to any political party and can therefore not be sponsored to take its decisions.
He said: “Our union is not affiliated to either the All Progressives Congress (APC) or the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The union’s main concern is for its members’ entitlements to be paid.
“We have threatened that we may not vote for any party on the day of election if our arrears are not paid.”
Hundreds of pensioners in Benin City had few weeks ago, threatened to mobilise against the governorship polls over the alleged non-payment of pension arrears spanning over 42 months.
The protesters, who marched through major streets in the city, carried various placards with inscriptions like, “Give us our pensions benefits,” “Pension benefits are economic and human rights of retirees,” “Pay us for God’s sake,” and “No vacuum in government, open pension board/bureau,” among others.
Aigbodion had lamented that the challenges before them is how to take care of their families, as government’s indebtedness to pensioners is taking its toll on them.