Ogun Pensioners Holds Prayer Session Over Unpaid N68bn Gratuity, Allowances

Femi Adeleke
Pensioners in Ogun State, on Thursday held a 1-day prayer session seeking God’s intervention over the alleged refusal of Governor Dapo Abiodun to pay their N68billion gratuity and allowances.
The pensioners, under the auspices of Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) rendered prayers to God in both Islamic and Christian ways, seeking God’s face over their plights.
Speaking with journalists after their prayers, Chairman, NUP, Comrade Waheed Oloyede said his union resolved to invoking the powers of God on the obstacles that have so far, prevented the state governor from addressing their plights having been convinced that there is nothing prayers cannot do.
“We have written series of letter, we have sent people that we think can assist, but there is no response and we’ve decided that now we send God to him until the government  of Ogun State have a listening hear to us. That is the purpose of this gathering”.
Oloyede listed 4 demands of the pensioners to include: increase in the pensioners monthly take home;  increase in the quarterly release of gratuity from N500 Million to N1 Billion; release of their deducted Contributory Pensions to their respective Pensions Fund Administrator (PFAs), as well as the constitution of the Pensions Committee which will administer the affairs of their union.
But lamenting the ordeals of members of his union, the Ogun NUP’s chairman said it will take the state government a period of 34 years to offset the N68 Billion gratuity whose sum it is releasing atN500 Million quarterly.
“According to the federal government constitution, the pension is supposed to increase every five years or whenever they increase the salary of workers but in Ogun State it has not been done”.
“They’ve increase the salaries of workers more than four times but up till now, they have not increase the pension in Ogun State and we have sent the circular from the federal government because the increase in pension send by the federal government was as a result of National minimum wage, and the National minimum wage was above for the workers of Ogun State. In November, 2020 up till now, the pension has not been increase”.
“But at the meeting we had with representative of the state government last week Wednesday, they promised that it will be increased and that we should give them till the end of May, 2022 and that is why we are doing this gathering”.
“So we are calling on them that if they don’t then the Pensioners Fund Administrator (PFA) will not be able to pay them when they go. Therefore, we appeal that they should do something”.
Oloyede however, declared that Hus members would not hesitate at staging an open protest to occupy the main roads of the Abeokuta metropolis should the state government fails to meet up with their demands at the end of May, 2022.

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