More than 50 concerned Cross River State pensioners under the aegis of the Nigerian Union of Pensioners, have written to state governor, Ben Ayade, warning that they will not be part of any attempt by government to make part payment of gratuities to retirees, owed gratuities since 2013, www.calitown.com can report.
In a letter dated 24th April, 2017 and recently submitted to the governor, through the Accountant-General of the state, the pensioners clearly state that they “… vehemently refuse part payment instead of our gratuities … the method of payment of gratuity in percentage had never been recorded anywhere in Nigeria to the best of our knowledge and Cross River State must not be the first”.
The letter, copies of which were forwarded to the Minister of Finance, Minister of the Niger Delta Ministry, among others, while making a strong point for their payment notes that, “we are privileged to know that the incumbent Government of Cross River State collected a loan of N40 billion which was intended to pay a few debts including gratuities owed by the state to retired civil servants. We are also aware that the Federal Government had provided bailout funds of N7.8 billion for Cross River State to upset gratuities and salary/pension arrears”.
While alluding to the abnormal handpicking and payment of gratuities to a few prominent recently retired Permanent Secretaries, Head of Service, Accounting staff and Directors who seemingly work within the pension office, the pensioners expressed displeasure that after the governor promised to start payment of the gratuities from December, 2015, he is yet to do so. They finally called on well-meaning Cross Riverians to add voice to their demands as “countless retirees have died while waiting for their gratuities”
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