“We are begging the present government to see to the plight of the pensioners. Nobody is happy when death is close, and your dues are not paid. It is as if government is praying for our death.  We have heard some of them say pensioners are not productive, they don’t add to the economy of the country."

Those were the words of lamentation from the chairman of Association of Retired Federal Senior Public Officers of Nigeria, ARFESPON, during a press briefing on the plight of Nigerian pensioners in Lagos.

These retired workers, most of them senior citizens, are facing an unpleasant situation.

The government still owes them and they are sending out this distress call to President Muhammadu Buhari to come to their aid.

“Many pensioners die daily due to their financial incapability to buy their medication and others,” he said.

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Odewabi recalled that there was a presidential order on the increase in salary in 2010, but while the increase was affected for serving government workers, the law mandating the implementation of pension increase had not been fully implemented.

He complained that under the immediate past administration, a committee was set up to review the presidential order, after which it came up with an unacceptable report and reduced the payable increase to pensions to 33% from 53.4%.

According to him, if there is an increment in salaries and pensions, the illegal deduction of tax will affect the computation of that increment, whereby the pensioners will be perpetually short-changed.

He said that the premise at which pensions had always been calculated had been wrong.

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