- Senior citizens in Benue state have taken ti the street to register their displeasure over the non-payment of their pension
- The pensioners said they have lost their wives to motorcycle riders known as Okada boys for failing to live up to their responsibilities
- According to the pensioners, the Benue state government led by Governor Samuel Ortom owes them for 74 months
Some pensioners in Benue state on Wednesday, September 21, took to the streets of Makurdi, the state's capital city to protest the non-payment of their pension by the government.
The pensioners under the aegis of the Concerned/Aggrieved Pensioners in Benue state protested against an alleged 74-month unpaid entitlement.
PM News reports that the pensioners who were led by their chairman, Comrade Akosu Ioream, the pensioners in their numbers carried placards bearing various inscriptions to press home their demand.
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Heading to the Benue state House of Assembly, the pensioners who met with Speaker, Titus Uba, said their mission was to acquaint the lawmakers with their plights.
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Ioream on behalf of the pensioners said they hoped that Uba could persuade the governor to accede to their demands.
He said that the pensioners were being owed by the government between 37 and 74 months pension arrears at the state and local government level respectively while the backlog of gratuity had become a forgotten issue.
“As a result of non-payment of pension and gratuity, pensioners are dying on a daily basis as most of them are on a special diet and drug but could not afford even a maintenance ration or drug. This has caused untold hardship to pensioners including the inability to afford decent food.
“Because of hardship occasioned by non-payment of pension and gratuity, we have lost our wives to ‘okada boys’ since we are no longer economically viable to cater for them."
They also noted that the Benue state government is yet to harmonise the pensions and gratuity payable to retirees as some of them are still being paid N800 per month.
In his reaction, the deputy clerk of the House of Assembly, Oliver Aguda, who received the protesters told them that the Speaker of the House who is the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate, had travelled out of the town.
He, however, promised to relay their message to him once he returns from his trip.
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