By Suleiman Shehu
Ibadan – Pensioners in Oyo State on Tuesday demanded the payment of their pension arrears.
Mr Gbadegesin Akande, the Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) in the state,
said in Ibadan that retired primary school teachers were the most affected among the pensioners
Akande spoke at the reception held for the newly appointed Chairman of Oyo State Pension Board, Mr Samson Aderounmu, and Mr Oluokun Akintola, his Local Government Service Commission counterpart.
He said the retired teachers were among those owed between 17 and 56 months of pension arrears while gratuities had not been paid since 2008.
“ Retired primary school teachers are tired of being paid in percentages and we urge that non-payment of local government pensioners along with local government staff be stopped during the tenure of Akintola.
“Regrettably, while six and 15 per cent increment was implemented for all categories of pensioners since 2013, that of the local government pensioners were not implemented.
“ The implementation of this was as a result of a Memorandum of Understanding the government signed with the union in January, 2013 with the imprimatur of a competent court of jurisdiction.
“ It is our hope that the union would not be pushed to go back to the court for the enforcement of the judgment,’’ Akande said.
He urged the new appointees to take up the issue with the passion it deserved, adding that they must work together to improve the condition of pensioners.
Akande, who noted that this was the first time the union would be organising a reception for newly appointed government officials, pointed out that the appointees deserved the appointment.
In her remarks, Mrs Adekemi Opatunde, the Special Assistant to the Oyo State Governor on Community Relations, urged the pensioners to be patient with the state government.
Opatunde said that government was currently working on ways to ensure that all arrears of pensioners in the state were paid.
In their remarks, the new appointees promised to do their best in ensuring that the state government addressed the challenges faced by the pensioners. (NAN)