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Fayemi Charges Pensioners On COVID-19 Protocols

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In order to curb the spread of coronavirus, the Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi has  cautioned elderly citizens in the state to avoid large gathering, maintain physical distancing and adhere strictly to other safety protocols established for this purpose.
This is coming following the global resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Governor stated this in Ado Ekiti on Tuesday while presenting 100 million naira cheque for payment of gratuities to 41 local government and primary school retirees in the State.
The Governor, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Biodun Oyebanji, said payment of the gratuities was in fulfilment of his promises to ensure that pensioners enjoy a worthy life after their meritorious service to the State.
Dr Fayemi reiterated his commitment to prioritising issues that affect the welfare and well being of pensioners with an assurance to sustain the techniques adopted in defraying outstanding gratuities in the State.
He promised to continue to utilize his position as the Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum in leading a frontal advocate that would position issues and policies affecting pensioners on the front burner of government agenda.
While assuring that Government would continue to try its best in making life comfortable for retirees, Dr Fayemi urged the beneficiaries to expend the money on profitable ventures.
Speaking on the rising cases of covid-19 across the world, the Governor stressed the need for old people who were considered as one of the most vulnerable age group to take personal responsibility in observing measures put in place to curtail the spread of the infection.
He said: “You have laboured for Ekiti State and now you are to collect the fruit of your labour and it speaks to the commitment of the government at ensuring that gratuity and pension are paid as at when due.
“It saddens the heart of the Governor that many retirees that served their fatherland had not been paid their entitlement.
“The Governor is desirous of leading a frontal attack on all the liabilities that our pensioners are due for both in Ekiti State and as the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum.
“Pensions and gratuities payment would continue to be on the front burner of the Government policies as long as you have the governor piloting the affairs of this state and pensioners can go to bed knowing fully well that issues that affect their welfare and well being will continue to get primary attention of this government.
“I can assure that before this Government winds down there would be more batches many people that have not been paid would be paid. My advice is that as we collect this we should make judicious use of it.
“I will advise also that as we celebrate Christmas and New year we should be guided and be reminded that COVID-19 is back
“And science tells us that the second wave is deadlier than the first wave, from history we learnt that the second wave is always more turbulent, so I will advise our people to observe social distancing, to watch their hands and observe other identified Covid-19 protocol. If it is not compulsory for us to go anywhere as we celebrate Christmas and New year let us stay at home.”
Also, in a related development, Governor Fayemi officially laid the foundation of the new Secretariat Complex of the union in Ado Ekiti. Performing the event, the Governor assured of his support in the timely completion of the project.
Earlier, the State Chairman of Nigeria Union of Pensioners in Ekiti, Elder Ayo Kumapayi commended the Governor for his policy on the payment of pensions and gratuities which had allowed members to fulfil their financial commitment to the union.
According to him, the new office complex is designed to accommodate an office, ICT section, a health section and a kitchen for the betterment of the members of the union.
Elder Kumapayi disclosed that the funding of the various projects which his administration embarked upon were drawn majorly from check-off dues deduction.

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Pension

Lagos Pays N1.49bn To 366 Retirees

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By Sola Alabadan

The Director-General (DG), Lagos State Pension Commission (LASPEC), Babalola Obilana presented bond certificates to the tune of N1. 49 billion to 366 pensioners in Lagos recently.

Obilana reassured that the government is  committed to the speedy resolution of all pension issues in the State and pledged to ensure the prompt payment of pensioners’ entitlements.

LASPEC’s Public Affairs Officer, Mrs. Mariam Adetokunbo Eko, quoted Obilana as saying that LASPEC is fully committed to ensuring that retirees receive their terminal benefits as at when due.

He said that LASPEC was established to take care of the needs of retirees, a role the Commission has been performing diligently and will continue to devote itself to. He went on to say that “we are dedicated to the retirees’ welfare because we know that they have worked so hard for the progress of the State. Now is the time for them to reap the benefit.”

While expressing gratitude to the retirees for always cooperating with the Agency and adhering to laid down rules, the DG explained that this has resulted in a greater percentage reduction in delay of the payment of their entitlements.

“We could have sent these Bond Certificates to everyone at home, but we deemed it proper for everyone to be here so that we can reiterate that LASPEC is open to all for questions. It gives us great joy that there has been a big reduction in reports of retirees being swindled of their entitlements”, he noted.

“This is because the retirees are now better enlightened as a result of our constant advocacy as well as open door policy at LASPEC”, he added.

Obilana urged the retirees to be wary of swindlers and crooks who are out to con them of their hard earned money, saying “LASPEC will not call or send you messages to charge you to get your entitlements. It is not in our mandate to do that.”

Speaking further, the LASPEC boss expressed gratitude to the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, for his swift response to pension matters, just as he emphasised the Governor’s unalloyed commitment to retirees’ welfare.

Obilana said that the government is presently working on a template that will ensure that retirees don’t have to wait longer to get their entitlements.

He disclosed that in order to improve on the current system, the Governor is currently working on a model that will ensure that retirees get their entitlements as soon as they disengage from service.

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Pension

Enugu Assembly Drops Ex-govs, Deputies’ Life Pensions

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Enugu State House of Assembly has dropped the proposed New Pension Bill for former governors and their deputies.
The bill, which scaled first reading during last week Thursday’s plenary soon generated condemnation from the general public.
If the bill is passed by the lawmakers, the state would be spending over N1.1bn annually on ex-governors and their deputies’ pensions while over N1.25bn would be used to purchase vehicles for the five former governors and their deputies.
However, the house during its Tuesday plenary stepped down the bill following a motion by the Leader of the House, Ikechukwu Ezugwu, who is the sponsor of the bill.
In his motion to step down the bill, Ezugwu said the bill though not out of place, needed to be stepped down following the outcry of the masses which they must listen to as their representatives in the House.
He said expressed the need to consult widely before the bill could be reintroduced if need be.
The motion was seconded by Onyinye Ugwu, the Deputy Leader of the House.
In his speech, the Speaker, Edward Ubosi, said there were a lot of provisions in the bill that were not constitutional which he pointed out to include the payment of salaries to spouses of former governors and their deputies.
This was subsequently stepped down for wider consultations.

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PTAD Postpones Resumption Of Pensioners’ Verification  

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The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) has postponed the resumption of the walk-in verification exercise for pensioners under the defined benefit scheme (DBS), PTAD spokesperson, Olugbenga Ajayi, said.

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