•Retirees demand payment
The Federal Government is yet to release money for payment of pension benefits to its former workers who retired from March 2017, the National Pension Commission (PenCom) has said.
Retirees under the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) across the country are demanding for their pension payment.
The Commission’s Head of Corporate Communications, Peter Aghahowa, reacting to retirees’ agitations, said they would be paid as soon as the Federal Government releases money to the Commission.
He, however, stated that the Federal Government has released money for pension payment to retirees, who retired between January to February 2017, adding that the Commission was prepared to pay the retirees few weeks from now.
The Pension Reform Act 2014 as repealed by PRA 2004 established the CPS, whose objective is to ensure that every person who worked in either the Public Service of the Federation, Federal Capital Territory, states and local governments or private sector receives his retirement benefits as and when due.
Section 11 subsection 6 states that any employer, who fails to deduct or remit the contributions within the time stipulated in addition to making remittance already due, be liable to a penalty to be stipulated by the Commission.
Subsection 7 further states that the penalty shall not be less than 2 per cent of the total contribution that remains unpaid for each month or part of each month the default continue and the amount of the penalty shall be recoverable as a debt owed to the employee’s retirement savings account as the case may be.
Meanwhile, in a letter by retirees under the auspices of the Association of Federal Contributory Scheme Pensioners, Oyo State chapter, to PenCom, which demanded to be paid their pension, they said the commission with the Federal Government had promised them prompt payment of pension immediately after retirement or at most, three months after.
The retirees lamented that they have stopped paying them upon retirement, noting that the bad old days of retirement is back.
President of the Associationj, Chief Amao Shittu and its Secretary, Prince E.A. Akingbade, stated that the promise ought to be kept in order to preserve the life of pensioners and those of their family members and dependants.