Pensioners in all the states of South-East, in solidarity with their colleagues in Imo State, have rejected Governor Rochas Okorocha’s offer for payment of 40 percent pension arrears, asking the retirees to forfeit the remaining 60 percent.
The pensioners described Okorocha’s slash of the entitlement as preposterous and smacks of mischief.
They therefore, called on human rights watch groups to wade into the matter and compel the Imo governor to either pay the state pensioners their full entitlements or pay whatever amount his government can afford to pay and leave the balance for other administrations to come.
In a press conference in Enugu, facilitated by the DFID funded voice to the people, leaders of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners, NUP, in the South-East lamented that despite the fact that the Imo government had made the pensioners lose 10 months of their pension, it was outrageous for the government to still slash the pension arrears by 60 percent.
Chairman of the Imo State NUP, Comrade Gideon Ezeji, said the action was the worst exploitation any administration could unleash on its subjects.
Ezeji said: “We were owed 22 months arrears. He (Okorocha) said he will pay for only 12 months, yet he went ahead to say he will now pay only 40 per cent of the 12 months and that we will forfeit 60 percent.”