Southern COEs pensioners urge Buhari to intervene over unpaid arrears

Pensioners

The South West and South East Federal Colleges of Education Union of Pensioners (FCEUP) have pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari to order the immediate disbursement of their 33 per cent pensions increase arrears of 42 months.

They also asked the to intervene in the payment of their monthly check-up dues to ameliorate their plight.

In a letter to the President yesterday in Abuja, the pensioners called for the dissolution of the management of Pensions Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) and appoint more humane Nigerians to man the agency.

The letter, which was signed by the South West Chairman of FCEUP, Dr. Stephen Akin Fatusin, lamented that the 33 per cent arrears of pension increase granted in July 1, 2009 to the colleges and other agencies was yet to be paid.

“We beg Mr. President to kindly order the release of balance of the 33 per cent arrears of pension increase forthwith. Our counterparts still active in service have forgotten that they collected theirs. Pensioners in some parastatals like the Prisons Service have been paid in full,” they said.

The union stated that Niger Insurance, which was earlier saddled with the disbursement of monthly pensions, paid only 12 months out of the 66 months arrears, while PTAD paid only 12 months, leaving a total of 42 months arrears.

The retirees described claims by the Executive Secretary of PTAD that the arrears had been paid in large measure, as worrisome and a costly propaganda, stressing that only the Police retirees had up to 30 months outstanding.

“The implication of this claim by the PTAD chief executive is that plans had been concluded to short-change the senior citizens by two years!

“Although one of us in the FCE sector stood up to refute the claim, there is no indication that PTAD is about letting the truth prevail on this matter.

“In fact, the 33 per cent arrears paid to FCE (Special), Oyo, in 2016, was badly mutilated such that the pensioners did not get their due till date in spite of the promises made to the contrary. All entreaties on this matter made to PTAD in the last eight months or more have gone largely unheeded.

“In reality, PTAD appears to have a penchant for pinching pensioners money. In November 2016 pension was delayed till December 14, 2016 before it was paid after we appealed to the then Acting President Yemi Osinbajo through a press conference of this kind in Oyo town,” the union said.

The pensioners, therefore, urged President Buhari to once again beam his searchlight on the activities of the Management of PTAD in the last one year, especially in the last few months and seek ways to ameliorate the suffering of pensioners, which is currently being exacerbated by the sharp practices in PTAD.

“What makes our appeal to Mr. President very urgent now is that PTAD is currently doing a great disservice to pensioners from the Southern part of this country where pensioners gather together to form a mass that is capable of protesting perceived cheating by PTAD,” they said.



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