A panel set up by the federal government to investigate pension fund of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) has unearthed £2.2million (N546 million) lying in an account at the Barclays Bank of London, United Kingdom.
The account was opened in the 1960s or 70s, the committee chairman, Mr. Joseph Ajiboye told Daily Trust.
Former minister of Power Prof Barth Nnaji had on July 18, 2012 inaugurated an eight-member probe panel to investigate the status of pension in the power sector vis-à-vis the Pension Laws since 1979.
Ajiboye said effort to retrieve the money was met with "bottleneck" and brick wall but assured that "the Nigerian High Commissioner in London can help in retrieving the money."
He said today's PHCN started as Niger Dam Authority to Electricity Company of Nigeria and later became the Electricity Company of Nigeria (ECN). The account was meant to settle the salaries and pension of expatriate workers then but that the committee learnt the last expatriate has died and "there was no longer reason to keep the account."
On the controversial 25 percent allegedly deducted from PHCN workers salary, Ajiboye explained that findings from meetings held with the Nigerian Union of Pensioners and pay slips of up to April 2012 presented by PHCN workers revealed that there was no evidence of deduction from any workers salary.
In his remarks, minister of state for power Darius Ishaku expressed the hope that the report will aid in finding a lasting solution to the lingering feud between PHCN workers and government saying the "only issue left with labour has now been transferred to office of the Secretary to the Federal Government (SGF)."