By Victor Ahiuma-Young
The Nigeria Union of Pensioners, NUP, South-West Zonal Council, has threatened legal action against the governors in the region over non-compliance with the constitutional provision on pension increment.
In a statement by its Chairman and Secretary, Waidi Oloyede and Sunday Akin, respectively,
NUP said it would take the action, if by November 30, the pension increment of 33.4 per cent and consequential adjustment of pension 2019 were not addressed.
The Union said: “Sections 210 (3) and 173 (3) of the 1999 Constitution states that pension should be increased any time salaries and wages of workers were increased or every five years, whichever comes first.
NUP also said it had written letters to the governors in the region on the decision of its meeting held on Sept.16 to take the governors to court, if they failed to implement the pension increments.
According to the statement, “The South-West leadership of Nigeria Union of Pensioners, at its meeting at Ado-Ekiti on September 16, 2021, observed that these provisions of the constitution have always been held in breach by governors in Nigeria.
“This has led to inappropriate pension payment with some pensioners earning as little as N330 per month in some states even here in the South-West. This infraction has resulted in poverty, debilitating diseases and even deaths among scores of our pensioners.”
NUP lamented that only Lagos and Ondo State Governments in the South-West region had implemented the 33.4 per cent pension increase of 2010, while Oyo, Osun, Ekiti and Ogun had not.
The Union said there was another wages increase of N18, 000 to N30,000 in 2019 with its consequential adjustment to the salaries and wages of workers, and that was brought to the notice of the governors.
The pensioners expressed sadness “up till this moment, no action or word has come from the governors indicating that they want to implement the increase. For the Governors in Oyo, Ekiti, Osun, and Ogun that have not implemented the 33.4 per cent pension increase of 2010, it is appropriate that this be done before the implementation of consequential adjustment of pension 2019 in order not to short-change the pensioners.”