The Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) has urged the Federal Government to release N51 billion accrued right to enable the National Pension Commission (PenCom) to live up to its mandate to pay retirees.
Its President, Mr Abel Afolayan said the problem of late payment to pensioners was caused by the government’s inability to release the accrued rights of more than N51 billion to PenCom to help them address the issues of pensioners arrears across the country.
In an interview at the weekend, he said: “It has become an attitude among many government agencies and employers to default in the remittance of contribution of workers’pension contribution to their Pension Fund Administrators(PFAs) and this is affecting the progress of the scheme.
“I want to assure that we shall not rest on our oars until the government pays us all our entitlements to the last kobo.
“As senior citizens, we pray that recession will not turn to depression and that Nigeria will quickly come out of it and become even much stronger.”
He praised the past administration of Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) for the payment of 24 months arrears of 33 per cent and the 42 months to CIPO pensioners.
He said the new administration of PTAD, led by Mrs Sharon Ikeazor, has agreed to pay the balance of 18 months of 33 per cent arrears soon.
According to him, NUP and PTAD would enter into a new negotiation with government on the new pension review which had been due for another increment since July last year.
He commended governors of Jigawa, Anambra, Enugu,Yobe and Lagos states, who have paid pensioners their allowances.
He called on defaulting governors to live up to their responsibility, adding that pensioners are dying daily because of lack of money.