Retirees petition CBN over agreement breaches, seek pensions review
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) pensioners have petitioned the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, over what they described as breaches of agreements for upward review of pensions in 2017 and 2019.
In a letter signed by their spokesman, Chimezie C. Ahaneku, he said a review of CBN’s pensions was long overdue. He explained that an agreement was reached between representatives of CBN’s management constituted by Emefiele and leaders of the Pensioners’ Club led by its former Acting President, Charles M. E. Katchy, for a general review of its pensions at a meeting of March 2017.
Following the meeting, a statement of CBN management’s team at the Pensioners Club’s Bi-annual National Conference in Abuja in September 2017, assured the retirees that the general pension review would be effected sooner than later.
“That promise made all of us happy at that occasion expecting that something good would happen thereafter. We are, therefore, disappointed and surprised that after the agreement and the promise, the general pension review has not been done, while pensioners continue to die without receiving their entitlements.
“Contrary to expectations, the September 2017 ‘sooner than later’ promise has become ‘later than sooner.’ We don’t know what is responsible for the delay.
“The longer the delay of the pension review, the more pensioners die without receiving the long awaited pension increase,” Ahaneku said.
For example, in the last one month, we have lost three members, two in Lagos, prominent among them being a former director, Patrick K. Tabiowo, who also was one-time President of the Pensioners Club and a pioneer staff who joined the CBN in 1960.
“Another Pensioner also died in Lagos on May 13, 2020, while another recently died at our Minna Branch, Niger State and nobody knows who will be next,” Ahaneku stated. He lamented that the most regrettable thing was that these people died without receiving the pension increase for which they waited too long before their death.
“At the last meeting constituted by Emefiele and led by Deputy Governor, Corporate Services, Edward L. Adamu, which included some directors and leaders of the Pensioners Club, led by Alhaji Adamu Mohammed Tabra on August 20, 2019, the pensioners were told that work on the general review of pension was in progress and would be completed in no time.
“In furtherance of the process for the payment of the new pension arising from the review, the CBN conducted a head count of all its pensioners nationwide, numbering about 5,000 in January 2020 to ascertain those still alive and eligible for payment.
“Our hope was kindled that the new pension rate would be paid in February 2020 or in March 2020 latest only to be disappointed again, As we speak, even after the May pension has been paid, but the expected increase was not reflected, thus, yet again, denying us our entitlements,” he added.