By Haruna Aliyu,Birnin Kebbi
Kebbi state chairman of pensioners pressure group Alhaji Babangida Garba Gwandu has commended the governor of Kebbi state Senator Atiku Bagudu for approving 6bn for the payments of gratuities to Kebbi retired civil servants.
Gwandu who gave the commendations at his residence in Birnin Kebbi added that the group are happy that Bagudu responded to the plight of Kebbi retirees who are passing through hell with a good number of them down with various degrees of ailments due to depression caused by anxiety arising from a long waiting for their benefits.
He explained that, aside from gratuities payments which are part of their agitations, pension upward review remains a herculean task before the group as living pensioners in Kebbi still receives very poor pensions remunerations “most of the civil servants who retired from active service in the 80s and 90s receive 2000, 4000 and 3000 thousand as pensions.
According to him from Obasanjo to late Yaradua, Goodluck Jonathan and now Buhari governments have upward reviewed pensions to meet minimum wage of active civil servants but is not the case in Kebbi “there still exist a retired secretary to the state government whose name I will not mention receiving 30,000 as pensions and alot of retired directors receiving 10,000 and below as pension in the state.
Gwandu stated that the pressure group have resolved to give Kebbi state government an ultimatum of mid-February 2022 to upward review the poor pensions or face mass actions which are to invite all living pensioners to converge at eid praying ground in Birnin Kebbi to seeks God’s intervention in the lingering matter “we are retired, tired and weak so we are not gathering to foment trouble but to pray fervently to God to touch the heart of Bagudu to upward review our pensions he said.
The pressure group chief who dismissed the claim of being bankrolled by a certain political party stated that the group does not belong to any party but will remain steadfast in fighting the course of retired civil servants in Kebbi state .