The Chairman, Military Pensions Board, AVM Muhammed Dabo, has allayed fears of any mishap in the forthcoming military pension verification exercise scheduled to hold in designated centres between Oct. 6 and Oct. 20.
Dabo said this in Abuja on Friday while briefing newsmen on the forthcoming verification exercise for military pensioners in and outside Nigeria.
He solicited the cooperation of pensioners as adequate measures have been adopted by stakeholders to ensure a hitch free exercise.
The objective, he explained, was to improve on the administration of military pension in the country.
“It will help decentralize the exercise and at each centre you have two biometric capturing machines that would be done simultaneously; it will reduce the time spent and the crowd and we believe it will go a long way in checking some these incidences of stampede or sleeping outside without any protection.
“Adequate security measures have been taken in various centres and we believe and pray that this exercise will be hitch free and we don’t envisage any bad incidence as it use to happen in the past.
“Those who are sick, we have made provision for the various team leaders, those who are hospitalize, to go to the various hospitals and get them verified even in their hospital beds.’’
According to him, the 2015 biometric verification will also make the exercise less cumbersome even as the population will become more controllable during the process.
He said the exercise had been designed for the convenience of the pensioners with specific dates allotted according to their rank brackets.
“Private to Lance Corporal and their equivalent in the Navy and the Air Force will start from 6 to 9 of October, 2015. Corporal to Sergeant and their equivalent in the other services, their verification exercise will take place from 10 to 13 of October, 2015
“Staff Sergeant to Warrant Officers and their equivalent from the other services, is from 14 to 15 of October, 2015.
“While Second Lieutenant to Captain and their equivalent in other services, their date for the verification exercise is 16 of October, 2015 all across the country; Majors to Colonels and their equivalent in other services is on the 17 of October, 2015.
“Brigadier Generals and above and their equivalent from the other services is on the 18 of October.
“While critically ill and hospitalized pensioners who will be unavoidably absent on the above stipulated dates will have 19 and 20 October, 2015; also all absentees from these dates are free to come to be verified on 19 and 20 October, 2015.’’
In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Mr Ismaila Aliyu, said that the Federal Government had taken adequate steps to reform military pension administration in the country.
He said the era of short-changing government was over as steps would be taken to account for money paid to all military pensioners in the country. (NAN)