The Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) has said it is alarmed by the decision of the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) to remove 23,089 pensioners from payroll for various reasons.
The PTAD according to correspondence share with the NUP sighted by our reporter has resolved to remove the names of the pensioners from the payroll with effect from August 2020 pension payment.
Affected pensioners are made up of 2,220 pension retirees of the former Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) as well as pensioners of Treasury funded Parastatals and the Universities under the Defined Benefits Scheme.
The decision according to PTAD was reached after verification exercise.
But the NUP in a reaction said while the Union will not support continued payment of monthly pension to those pensioners who did not undergo verification, it is however of the firm belief that not all the 23,089 pensioners on the attached list are dead, sick or even did not attend the aforesaid verification.
NUP general Secretary, Actor Zal is "It is glaringly impossible" for such numbers not to attend the verification, while also adding that the union was "shocked at the staggering figure of 23,089 pensioners about to be yanked off the payroll for various reasons."
He said, "Therefore, we want to seriously appeal that you painstakingly cross examine your facts and records very well and be double sure of the names involved before removing them finally from the payroll."
He explained that experience over the years have shown to us that it is always easier to remove names from payroll than to restore them.
He said, "Remember, pensioners monthly payment is a matter of life and death for the pensioners as many of them do not have any other means of income to survive. More so, they are aged, vulnerable and endangered species exposed to numerous health challenges."
"Consequently, we would like to appreciate the painstaking efforts of PTAD in carrying out the last parastatals pensioners verification through the length and breadth of the country. The thoroughness and professionalism of your staff needed to be applauded and commended as well.