…As FG Monthly Pension Liability Hits N7.5 Bn
The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate, PTAD, has commenced verification exercise of federal government pensioners in Lagos state with the view to determine actual government pensions liability.
About 21,000 existing pensioners will be scrutinized during the two weeks exercise.
The executive secretary of the agency Sharon Ikeazor who monitored the exercise at five centers designated for the program expressed satisfaction at the turn out of pensioners.
Speaking at Ketu center, Ikeazor explained that the outcome of the exercise will help determine actual pension liability of government and ensure all outstanding arrears are settled.
She disclosed that currently government pays about N7.5 billion in monthly pension to its retirees but said the ongoing exercise which will be done across the country will help put to rest all forms of challenges including putting in proper perspective correct pensions profile of government as well as bring conformity in the payment system.
The executive secretary regretted pains and suffering pensioners experienced in the past due to inadequate capturing of their data leading to delayed payments as well as other irregularities associated with lack of documentation.
She recalled that in 2016, about 15,000 pensioners were discovered not to have Biometric Verification Number, BVN, a situation that caused delay in payment.
She assured pensioners that their plight will be over at the conclusion of the exercise.
Ikeazor commended the Lagos State government for its cooperation and support by providing ambulance services as well as health officials to attend to emergency cases.
Also speaking, Comrade Abiodun Michael Lagos State secretary of National Union of Pensioners, NUP, commended PTAD for decentralising the exercise which has reduced stress of aged pensioners who previously had to travel kilometers to be attended to.
“In the past the exercise is done at one center and everyone will assemble there at some point people will collapse. But now we are provided food water and health care facilities. Infact we have never had it so before”, he said.
Corroborating the claim, Mr. Daniel Okoro, assistant secretary federal civil service pensioners in Lagos, said the exercise is the best so far.
Okoro said their members turned out enmass because of the level of sensitisation the union carried.
He expressed the hope that the exercise will produce the desired results to enable pensioners enjoy their retirement.