Our pensions for survival, not for burial, NIPOST pensioners cry to FG
By VICTOR AHIUMA-YOUNG
AGGRIEVED Nigerian Postal Service, NIPOST, pensioners have appealed to the Federal Government and the management of NIPOST, to pay their over seven years arrears, saying their pensions is for them to live and not for burial.
This came as the protesting pensioners vowed to continue to disrupt NIPOST activities until the management settles all unpaid pensions and arrears especially after the deadlock of a meeting between the pensioners and the management of NIPOST in Abuja, recently.
Chairman of the Lagos chapter of Nigeria Union of Pensioners, NUP, NIPOST branch, Mr Yomi Akindutire, while speaking with Pension and You, said NIPOST management was not prepared to settle their seven-year unpaid pension arrears, or reach an agreement with the retirees on the issue.
Akindutire vowed that members would continue to protest until government listened and addressed their plight.
According to him: “The meeting we held in Abuja was deadlocked. The management did not come forth with any settlement plan for the pensioners. We told the NIPOST management that they should pay those who retired in 2005 and 2006 six months arrears and those who retired in 2012 should be paid November pension before we discuss the gratuity terms.”
He said the Federal Government and the management of NIPOST should realize that pension is for survival and not for burial, lamenting that NIPOST did not take any decision on the terms of payment which left the pensioners with no choice than to continue with the protest until further notice.
The Chairman said that the pensioners would be ready to discuss and reach agreement with the management if the terms were agreed on.
Akindutire confirmed that two pensioners died in Lagos in the early days of the protest and that it was sad that the non-payment of pensioners had led to the untimely death of many in different parts of the country.
According to him, some of the pensioners were owed eight, 12, 14, 18 and 72 months respectively.
It would be recalled that placards carrying pensioners had last month begun protesting at NIPOST offices in Lagos and other parts of the country over unpaid pension arrears.
Union appeals to FG over arrears
MEANTIME, National Chairman of Nigeria Union of Pensioners, NUP, NIPOST branch, Alhaji Braimoh Ogborien, has pleaded with the Federal Government to pay the balance of their pension arrears.
Ogborien, who spoke with Pension and You,made the appeal in n Lagos, added that government should conclude the payment at the end of this month to avoid another protest.
According to him, after meeting with government representatives in January, some pensioners who retired in 2011, had received one month’s arrears, while others who left in 2012 had been paid three months’ arrears, saying “About 2, 000 retirees had received their money in the 2011 batch while 7, 000 had been paid in the 2012 batch.