Pensioners in Ogun State, on Wednesday, shutdown the state secretariat, to protest alleged non-payment of N68 billion 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, the state capital.
Led by their state chairman, Sikiru Ayilara, the pensioners said they were protesting non-payment of gratuities, lateness and non-increment in their monthly pensions and discrimination against them and the state pensioners by the state governor, Dapo Abiodun.
The protesters carried 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.
It was reported that the protesting retired civil servants locked in civil servants and the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Tokunbo Talabi, for more than four hours.
Addressing journalists, Ayilara, lamented the inhuman treatment he and other pensioners have been subjected to by the Abiodun administration.
He accused Abiodun of failing to keep his promises to the pensioners, adding that some of them still earn N3,000 as monthly allowance.
Ayilara described as “a wicked act” the quarterly payment of N500 million by the governor, which according to him would take 34 years to clear all the gratuities.
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”.
The LOGPAN chairman added 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.
Reacting to the plights of the pensioners, Talabi appealed to the pensioners to be more patient with the government, saying “the government is currently experiencing hard times.”
He assured that Abiodun will look into their demands