Pensioners in Ogun State, on Wednesday, shut down the Ogun State secretariat, housing the governor’s office in protest against the non-payment of N68 billion 10 years outstanding gratuity.
The pensioners, under the auspices of Local Government Pensioners Association (LOGPAN) blocked the two main gates of the secretariat, in Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, locking out the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Tokunbo Talabi and other civil servants for over four hours.
The protesters were armed with placards with inscriptions such as “gratuities are on sales to pensioners”, “Governor Dapo Abiodun, honour your father and treat Pensioners well” and “Governor Abiodun Abiodun, we don’t deserve this worst humiliation”, among others.
In June, members of LOGPAN had staged a protest to express their grievances.
Addressing journalists, the State Chairman of LOGPAN, Sikiru Ayilara, lamented the alleged inhuman treatments being meted to them by the Abiodun administration.
He accused Abiodun of failing to keep his promises to the pensioners, lamenting that, some of them still earn paltry sum of N3,000 as monthly allowance.
Ayilara described the quarterly payment of N500 million by the governor which according to him would take 34 years to clear all the gratuities as “a wicked act”, which is unacceptable.
He called for the review of the policy by voting N1billion monthly instead of payment of N500m quarterly.
According to him, the association had written 13 letters to the governor seeking his audience to address their demands, “but the governor has remained recalcitrant and unyielding to their demands”.
He listed some of their demands to include, non-payment of gratuities, lateness of pension payment, non-increment in the monthly pensions and discrimination against the members of the association by the government among others.
Ayilara insisted that, it is illegal for the state government to be paying their pension through the Ministry of Finance instead of the Bureau of Local government pensions.
Responding to the pensioners, the SSG, Tokunbo Talabi appealed to the pensioners to be more patient with the government, saying “the government is currently experiencing hard times.”
He assured that the government would look into the demands of the pensioners.