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Chuks Udo Okonta
The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) has refuted news reports that it recently received N54 billion from the Federal Government to pay 33 per cent pension arrears.
PTAD stated this on its Twitter Handle stating that the attention of the its Executive Secretary, Sharon Ikeazor has been drawn to a misleading and unverified media report on the release of N54billion for the payment of 33 per cent arrears.
“The E.S. PTAD wishes to state unambiguously that the said N54billion was released by the Federal Government to the National Pension Commission (PenCom) in April 2017 for the payment of pension arrears for retirees under the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) and not for the payment of 33 per cent arrears.
“We urge media reporters both online and print media to kindly verify information before going to press in order not to misinform and mislead our pensioners,” it said.
The Chairman, House Committee on Pension, Hassana Shekarau, had few weeks back said the Federal Government released N54billion to National Pension Commission (PenCom) for the payment of the 33 per cent pension arrears to pensioners.
The outstanding payments of 33 per cent pension arrears is for pensioners under the Defined Benefit Scheme (DBS).
Last year, PTAD paid Nigerian police pensioners; Civil Service Pensioners and parastatals pensioner installment of the 33 per cent.
“All pensioners under the Customs, Immigration and Prisons Pensions Department had already been paid the 33 per cent arrears in full since August 2016.
“The latest payment was made from the Service Wide Vote released last week by the Federal Ministry of Finance (FMF).”
PTAD noted that it will settle the outstanding arrears of the 33 per cent increment as soon as additional releases are made.
“Until then, the Directorate implores allits pensioners to be patient and continue to exercise vigilance against the activities of fraudsters and rabble-rousers.
“Always remember that the payment of pension and other retirement benefits is free. Please report any incident of extortion to the Directorate or the security agencies,” it said.