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Some Retired Enugu Workers Still Earn N1000 As Pension – Organized Labour

ENUGU – The organized labour in Enugu state has said that some retirees in the state civil service were still being paid N1,000 monthly as their pension.

The state chairman of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Comrade Benneth Asogwa, and his counterpart in the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Fabian Nwigbo disclosed this while addressing the state governor, Dr. Peter Mbah on behalf of workers during the Workers’ Day celebration at the Michael Okpara Square, Enugu on Wednesday.

According to the TUC chairman, there was an urgent need for an upward review of the pension to improve the social and economic wellbeing of retirees, lamenting that pensioners were still owed outstanding pensions, a development he added, had put so much pressure on their health and general wellbeing.

The workers also demanded that “payment of outstanding pension to retirees of state parastatals, local government and primary schools and the incorporation of parastatal retirees into the state central monthly pensions platform.

“Harmonization of pensions and payment of gratuity to retirees at both state and local government levels”, as well implementation of Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS) for the Health Professionals and workers in the State Health system.

For the NLC chairman, the government should ensure that after the verification of pensioners, payment of the arrears of gratuity should commence to alleviate the sufferings of persons in that category.

The workers, among others pressing demands, also called for a review of the termination of the appointment of some staff of Enugu State College of Education Technical (ESCET), most of who had worked in the institution for over two years before the announcement of the sack.

Governor Mbah, who was represented by his deputy, Ifeanyi Ossai, empathized with the Nigerian workers in the current hardship they face in the face of the economic situation in the country.

He stayed that his administration was aware of their challenges, pleaded for their understanding and more patience.

He said: “No one can pretend that there are challenges in our country that the income the workers receive hardly is enough to cater for their basic needs. This is because we don’t exist in another planet. We live with our people. They go to the same market. Families buy fresh the same petrol stations, buy from the same shops with their children going to the same schools and hospitals.

“We know how hard it is for every worker. But all we are asking from our workers is for them to be patient with us. Within the means available to government, we keep doing all we can to make life a lot better for the workers of Enugu State.

“But, you must also understand that for everything we have failed to do, not for want of desire to fulfill. It is because of non-availability of resources to meet the outstanding obligations of government.

“That’s why we’re trying to create wealth. That’s why we’re aggressive on our local and foreign drive for investments. That’s why we’re trying to create jobs”.

On pensioners that were yet to be paid in various parastatals and corporations, the governor promised to look into the matter with a view to solving it with dialogue the way previous issues were settled.

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