By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Lagos State House of Assembly on Monday during plenary proposed to amend the Lagos State Pension Reform Law, CAP L52, Laws of Lagos State, 2015 and Cap C136, Amendment of 2018.
The Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa who presided over the plenary said: “The issue of pension has become a very disturbing one in the state as every one of us has a retiree who has been complaining about their inability to access their retirement benefits.
“This bill goes beyond the 21 days’ notice and there is a need for us to address the Bill. It should be thrown open and giving total overhauling.”
He added that “The Bill is complicated as this is the third time that we will be addressing the issue of pension. So we will take this opportunity to give it a global look and allow those retirees that have been denied the opportunity of accessing their benefits to come and be part of it.
“Also the professionals along this line to come on board and tell us what should be done so that we can have a perfect work on the matter and have a lasting solution “
Oluyinka Ogundimu, Chairman Committee on Establishments, Training, Pensions and Public Service while highlighting the proposed amendment stated that it is recommended that the provisions of section 89 (2) of the Pension Commission Act and Guidelines issued by it should apply instead of the State having its own provision.
It also stated that the Certificate of Clearance should be issued within 21 days of the employee’s retirement or dismissal from Service.
The letter allows retirees easy access to their pension account, this has, however, been amended to read “Letter of Confirmation of Exit” to be issued within twenty-one (21) days prior to the employee’s retirement or exit from the Lagos State Public Service for easy access to their retirement benefits.”
While stating the importance of the Bill, Sanai Agunbiade, reiterated that the Bill will respond to the welfare of the citizens of Lagos State who have worked tenaciously and enable them to get what is due to them.
Abiodun Tobun while lending his support for the Bill expressed that if passed into law, the Bill will make life easier for retirees from service
“The Bill will give the assurance to retirees that they will get what duly belongs to them after leaving the active service,” he stated.
In his contribution, Femi Saheed stated that the advantages of the Bill are enormous, such as saving the cost of governance and equally having enough money in the economy through the pull of funds.
Rotimi Abiru said: “The Bill seeks to bring to conformity functions of the Lagos State Civil Service and Pensions Commission and to protect pensioners from managers and to ensure that pensioners get their money in good time.”
The Speaker, subsequently, committed the Bill to the Committee on Establishments, Training, Pensions and Public Service to report back in two weeks.