Home News ‘We Are Tired Of Fake Promises’, Rivers Pensioners Stage Protest Over 10 Years Non Payment Of Gratuities, Other Benefits

‘We Are Tired Of Fake Promises’, Rivers Pensioners Stage Protest Over 10 Years Non Payment Of Gratuities, Other Benefits

by Anita Ogona

The Forum of  Rivers State  Civil  service  pensioners/Retirees  while staging a peaceful protest in Port Harcourt on Wednesday 20th April 2022 said  despites efforts  made by the Retired civil servants in Rivers State,  from 2012 to date over  non-payment of their pension arrears and gratuity for over 10 years have fell to the grounds.

The retirees who had gathered at the Rivers State Secretariat Complex, to seek  God’s divine intervention over their plight earlier held a special prayer session decried fervent appeals made through various medium, stakeholders and organized Labour, Including protest have not yet yielded any result and the pensioners are dying in droves without accessing the statutory  monies owed them by the Rivers State government

The protesters, who carried placards and black flags, marched through some major streets of the state capital before stopping at the main entrance of Government House, Port Harcourt.

The Coordinator of the Retirees LUCKY ATI said we are urging Government to as a matter of urgency to start the Implementation of the Budgetary provisions as it effects Retirees and pensioners and also make extra budgetary provisions as what is budgeted  is grossly inadequate to kick start the payment process  which includes the Following: –

  1. Payments of Gratuities
  2. Payment of Arrears Of Pensioners
  3. Payments Of Death Benefits
  4. Payments of  pension Adjustments
  5.  Continuous Biometric exercise and placements of Retirees on monthly pension
  6. Implementations of Consequential  Adjustment of pensioners

He threatened that the retirees will return to the street if government fail to pay their pension arrears and gratuity at the end of may as promised by the state government

Also addressing the retirees, another pensioner stakeholder Frederick Nakpigi-Berah, said statistics reveal that about one hundred and fifty retiree have died from one issue or the other resulting to inability to pay their bills.

Nakpigi-Berah called on the state government to pay their unpaid arrears of gratuity, saying that the presidential ambition of Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike should have been their project if he had paid them earlier but will not support him for owing them.

Another protesting pensioner Elder Mike Amadi  said  “I retired eight years ago precisely 2014. We gathered here today to peacefully demonstrate to call on the government of Rivers State to pay us our pension arrears and gratuity, you can see that i am sick and I have no money to buy Ordinary Panadol after working for 35 years.

“We are also aware that there are so many of us who retired recently, about two, three years ago, who have not been paid their monthly pension. We are peacefully demonstrating that those people should be payrolled and payed.

Addressing the protesters, the Director-General of Rivers State Pension Board, Mr. Ijeomah Samuel, assured the protesters that those who have underwent their biometric exercise will begin to receive their pension arrears before the end of May, 2022 and that the payment would start from those who retires years ago, before the recent Retirees would get their own and urged to be patients as the Month of April is winding up.No description available.

Mr. Samuel, who was once a retired Permanent Secretary in the state employed by Rivers state Government to manage the affairs of the Pension also assured that the process of of paying gratuity will commence would be seamless as the Leaders of the Group would be incorporated into the committee to ensure that no Pensioner who retired earlier is left out while the new retirees gets paid to ensure equity and justice

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