September 23, (THEWILL) – A group under the canopy of Concerned Benue Pensioners (CBP), have challenged the leadership of the Benue State House of Assembly, to rise up to its statutory function of checkmating the excesses of the governor, which has withheld their pension arrears for 111 months.
In a peaceful protest to the Benue State House of Assembly to press home their demands, they averred that their pension has been withheld to oblivion up to 37 and 74 months at the state and local government levels respectively.
The leader of the group, Mr Akosu Orban, who spoke in Makurdi, said a huge amount of money was made available to the Benue state government from the federation account, more than N28 billion bailout in 2015.
“Another sum of N18.25 billion bailout was given in 2021. Paris club refunds came in more than four tranches amounting to more than N12 billion and huge borrowing in the name of paying pensioners to no avail.”
According to Mr Orban, the monthly federal allocation to states and local governments which have been coming in monthly without break has not made any perceptible impact on the payment of pensioners.
The group said they are looking up to Mr Speaker, Titus Uba, as the governorship candidate on the platform of the PDP in Benue state come 2023 to do the needful; noting that with a high level of indebtedness, where he is going to start if elected.
“We, therefore, call on the Benue State House of Assembly as a matter of urgent public importance to deliberate on our complaints, claims and grievances with a view to settling pensioners to alleviate our sufferings.”
Receiving the letter on behalf of the assembly, the Deputy Clerk, Mr Oliver Aguda, said the Speaker, Mr Titus Uba, has travelled out of the county on an official engagement, but will deliver their mail to him for consideration.
He commended them for their orderly and peaceful conduct in the course of their agitation, assuring that the 9th assembly, under Titus Uba, has a passion for Benue workers and will do the needful at an appropriate time.