[FILES] Dapo Abiodun. Photo/facebook.com/ogsgofficialPensioners in Ogun State, yesterday, shut down the governor’s office in Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, in protest against non-payment of N68 billion, which is a 10 years outstanding gratuity.
The retirees, under the aegis of Local Government Pensioners Association (LOGPAN), blocked the two main gates to the Governor’s Office Secretariat, preventing the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Tokunbo Talabi and other civil servants from gaining entrance for over four hours.x
The protesters, armed with placards with inscriptions such as “Gratuities are on sales to pensioners”, “Governor Dapo Abiodun, honour your father and treat pensioners well” and “Governor Abiodun, we don’t deserve this worst humiliation”, among others, accused the governor of failing to keep his promises to the pensioners.
The State Chairman of LOGPAN, Sikiru Ayilara, who addressed journalists at the venue of the protest, lamented that some of the retirees still earn N3,000 as monthly pension.
Ayilara described the quarterly payment of N500 million by the governor, which according to him, would take 34 years to clear all the gratuities, as “a wicked act” and unacceptable.x
He urged the review of the policy by voting N1 billion monthly instead of N500 million quarterly.
According to him, the association had written 13 letters to the governor seeking his audience to address their demands, “but the governor has remained recalcitrant and unyielding to their demands.”
He listed some of their demands to include non-payment of gratuities, lateness in pensions payment, non-increase in the monthly pensions and discrimination against members of the association by the government.x
He insisted that it is illegal for the state government to be paying their pensions through the Ministry of Finance instead of the Bureau of Local Government Pensions.
BUT responding, the SSG appealed to the retirees to be more patient with the government, saying: “The government is currently experiencing hard times.”
He assured that the government would look into their demands.x