Our members dying in droves, pensioners beg govs

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The Nigeria Union of Pensioners, Southwest Zone, on Thursday took a swipe at state governors for turning blind eyes to the plights of pensioners and issues bothering them.

NUP Southwest Publicity Secretary, Segun Abatan, lamented that pensioners were suffering and dying in droves across the states due to unpaid pensions, gratuities, and poor access to health insurance policies.

Abatan, who spoke on behalf of the zone during the union’s annual Southwest Zonal Council meeting held in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, appealed to the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and the state governors to initiate policies that would give pensioners unfettered access to robust medicare for longevity after meritorious services to the nation.

The pensioners’ spokesperson lambasted Southwest governors for allegedly failing to implement an increment in pensions that could match the economic realities of the nation.

He said, “Throughout the nation, pensioners are dying in droves because no policy exists to enhance their Medicare after retirement. The governors should emulate their Oyo State counterpart, Seyi Makinde, who placed all retirees on health insurance, which has reduced the level of deaths. The governors must put in place a robust health insurance programme for pensioners.

“I regret to tell you that the governors have taken the issue of pension and gratuities off their tables for consideration. Apart from Ondo and Lagos, other states have not paid the pension increase nor the minimum wage consequential adjustment for workers.

“The Southwest governors are also defaulting in the payment of check-off dues to the union. If you are paying your pension regularly and you are not paying check-off dues, you can’t be boasting that you have paid it in full.

“So our pensioners must study the political landscape very well so that in 2023, they won’t vote for those that will make lives more miserable but for those that will make their lives better,” the pensioners said.


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