Sunday, April 14, 2024

Osun pensioners threaten return to IDPs camp over unpaid arrears

Retirees in Osun State have threatened to set up another Internally Displaced Pensioners camp to protest the inability of the state government to fully pay the backlog of their arrears and other entitlements owed them.

The Chairman of the forum of 2011/2012 retired public servants of the Osun State branch of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners, Comrade Omoniyi Ilesanmi, told our correspondent that the state government owed them 13 months half arrears.

Ilesanmi lamented that the administration of Governor Rauf Aregbesola had been insensitive to the plights of pensioners in the state.

While claiming that over a thousand of their members had died due to lack of money to fend for themselves and get good medical attention, the forum chairman also disclosed that the state government had yet to pay them the gratuities for 2008 to December 31, 2012.

Osun government owes us 13 months pension arrears

He said many retirees in the state were suffering while many others had been ejected from their rented apartments by landlords.

Ilesanmi stressed that the retirees might, therefore, be constrained to set up another IDPs camp if their demands were not met by the government, adding that their living conditions had continued to deteriorate.

According to him, “the Osun State Government under the leadership of Governor Rauf Aregbesola is owing us 13 months pension arrears. He was paying half, but we need the full payment.

The primary retirees got their last payment yesterday (Thursday), while retired civil servants were paid half on May 14. The government has not paid our gratuities of 2008 to December 31, 2012.”

On the steps the retirees had explored to ensure that Aregbesola acceded to their yearnings, Ilesanmi said, “We have written so many letters to the government.

We have written letters to President Muhammadu Buhari; his Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo,; the Senate, the House of Representatives, Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, and other save our souls letters.

“The Agba Osun scheme that is led by Engineer Sola Akinwumi, the former SSG during Chief Bisi Akande administration, accompanied us to Governor Aregbesola in February, this year, where we appealed to the governor to pay us and that our members are dying daily while others have been bedridden in the hospital.

It’s pathetic that our children are being sent out of school while our members have been ejected from their apartments because of lack of money to pay rent.

“Some of us are living in dilapidated buildings and we now look like lunatics. Our situation is pitiable and we are appealing to Aregbesola to come to our rescue, since we don’t have any other means of livelihood other than our pensions and gratuities.”

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