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NLC to engage NASS over criminalisation of nonpayment of pension

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The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has expressed its resolve to collaborate with the Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) in a renewed effort, to ensure that States owing pension arrears are engaged to pay what they owe to the retirees.

NLC President, Comrade Joe Ajaero made this known when he interfaced with the national leadership of the NUP in Abuja on Thursday.

The National President of the NUP, Comrade Godwin Abumisi, had in his welcome remarks told Ajaero the many challenges the senior citizens are facing in the country, especially across the States of the federation, where many State governors refuse to pay pensions. He went on to request NLC’s intervention and support.

The NUP National President, particularly expressed great disappointment and displeasure at the unrepentant attitude and inhuman treatment some State governors mete to pensioners in their various States.

He used Abia and Imo State governors as the chief example of those who have refused to pay pensions to the retirees even with the excruciating economic hardship in the country.

Reacting to the demand of the pensioners, Ajaero expressed sadness, saying it is unacceptable the terrible situation must governors made the retirees in their States go through. He wondered why a governor or president will not prioritize payment of pension, knowing it is the only livelihood of many pensioners and their right.

He added that governors and president have relatives who will retire someday, asking why they institute and are proud of legacy of nonpayment of pension that will eventually hurt their family members and relative in the future.

Furthermore, Ajaero said; “We must extend our hand of fellowship to NUP. The challenges NUP have as an affiliate of NLC will be a challenge to the entire unions that are affiliated with NLC. Pensioners cannot fight for themselves alone, NLC will take up their issues and fight for them.

“We will try our best to honor our fathers and mothers, the pensioners. It is very important we do that because we all will retire and become pensioners someday. The Federal and State governments should have been paying a living pension to our pensioners by now, not refusing to pay even the miserable amounts the retirees are entitled to. NLC will pursue a bill and task the National Assembly on criminalisation of non-payment of pension.

“We will shutdown States who refuses to pay pensions. Our actions will be louder and we’ll ensure that our pensioners are paid what is being owed to them. We cannot continue to allow State governors treat the senior citizens who spend the best years of their life working for the wealth and progress of our country to be treated with disregard.”

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