Lagos - Retirees of the Nigeria Postal Service (NIPOST) in Lagos State on Monday protested over alleged non-payment of their 60 months pension arrears by the Federal Government.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the placard carrying retirees numbering about 100 protested in the front of the General Post Office, Marina, Lagos, at about 11:30 a.m.
Some of the placards read: ``Please, PMG pay us our 60 months pension arrears now’’, ``The joy of the Civil Service is to eat fruits of one’s labour, after retirement’’.
Others read: ``Must NIPOST retirees be suffered after retirement’’?, and ``President Goodluck Jonathan save the souls of NIPOST retirees from dying’’. Mr Braimoh Oboirien, the National Chairman, NIPOST Retirees, said that the retirees were being owed pension arrears since 2005 totalling 60 months. Oboirien explained that NIPOST management had on Dec. 6, 2012 invited the union executive to its headquarters in Abuja for dialogue.
He said that during the meeting the management agreed to pay the retirees two months pension arrears before Christmas but failed to pay. He disclosed that the protest was necessitated following the failure of NIPOST management to pay the two months arrears. ``Payment had not been made up to the present moment.
``The protest is indefinite until the payment of the entire 60 months pension arrears to the retirees,’’ Oboirien said. He said that the protest was being held nationwide and would continue till government responded to their demand.
He said that protests were held simultaneously in NIPOST offices in Lafiaji, Somolu, Ikeja, Apapa and Victoria-Island. Also speaking, Mr Adeoye Raphael, a retiree, lamented that he had not been paid pension arrears since December 2006 when he was disengaged from service.
Raphael said: ``Government should pay the pension arrears because so many of the retirees have died since they do not have any means of livelihood.’’ Mr Edwin Omogiade, who retired on GL 09, said he was being owed about 16 months’ pension arrears. But, Mr Airiohuodion Patrick, a retiree on GL 14, disclosed that he had not been paid his pension arrears since 2003.
Patrick urged the Federal Government to pay the retirees pension arrears ``for them to live on”.