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The Abia State Government is under fire again as some of the pensioners in Abia State have once again taken to the streets as they urged the Federal Government of Nigeria to intervene on the pensions being owed by the Abia State Government and to prevail over the Abia State Government to save their lives.
Chukwuemeka Okezie who is the coordinator of the pensioners who were in all-black attire, weeping and singing retributive songs had marched round the capital city to show their anger.
Addressing newsmen, Okezie disclosed that Monday, June 19, two of their members died “out of starvation by not being able to buy drugs”, adding that recently, “the state started paying over three months, but half pension.”
He said since 2014, “total number of unpaid monthly pension is 38 months, non-harmonisation of pensions from 1998 to 2010, and unpaid accumulated gratuities for 20 years.”
Okezie added, “Who is the Moses that will advise Abia State Government to lead us out of Egypt?”
They pleaded with the Federal Government to intervene by prevailing on the state government to pay them before they die.
In a recent report, the Imo State Government has reported that it has kick-started the the process of sanitising the State’s Pension Board to tackle rising cases of fraudulent practises in the system while frowning against cabinet members who want to engage in fraud.
Mr Ford Ozumba who is the state’s Commissioner for Labour, Employment and Productivity, made this disclosure while speaking with newsmen, in Owerri, on Monday.
The Labour Commissioner who frowned at reports of fraudulent activities in the Board regretted that some staff of the board were “responsible for the excesses”.
He described the situation as regrettable, adding that the government wasted no time in engaging seasoned hands to prevent the Board from becoming a centre for fraudulent activities.
” When we came in, we discovered the incredible fraud in the pension system, a situation which was bleeding the state.
”We hired the services of a seasoned finance expert who had spent all her life in the military, and with all the precision that comes with managing military finance, we have gotten the desired results “, he said.