Technological Glitches Responsible For Non-Payment Of Pension – PTAD

 

The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) on Thursday said technological glitches are responsible for the non-payment of pension to retired federal civil servants in Lagos.

Executive Secretary of PTAD, Dr Chioma Ejikeme, speaking on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily said her agency was working on resolving the delayed payments.

A Lagos state secretary of the National Union of Pensioners, Abiodun Michael, had lamented that some pensioners were being owed up to nine months.

READ ALSO: Man Slumps As Edo Pensioners Stage Protest

“Most of these people, their money go into medicals,” he said. “They are dying everyday. In a week, you will get four to five obituaries.”

But Dr Ejikeme was insistent that it wasn’t the fault of PTAD, but the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation.

‘Pockets of complaints’

“We send for reports from GIFMIS (Government Integrated Financial Management Information System) to get the payments that have been made,” Dr Ejikeme said on Thursday. “Sometimes it takes a week, sometimes more.

“So we have that lag in communication as to whether the payments we made failed or not. And when we have such a situation, when the pensioner complains, we ask them to send us their statement of accounts, so that we can confirm that that payment didn’t go through.

“If he (Abiodun Michael) says 18,000 pensioners have not been paid, it means that PTAD has a bias for Lagos state pensioners. Why is it that the other pensioners from other states all over the federation are not making the same complaints?

Executive Secretary of the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate, Dr Chioma Ejikeme, appeared on Channels Television's Sunrise Daily on June 16, 2022.
Executive Secretary of the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate, Dr Chioma Ejikeme, appeared on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on June 16, 2022.

 

“These are pockets of complaints and we are addressing them. This is a system, it’s technology, there’s nothing we can do about it.

“I have apologised to the pensioners about the three month arrears. We try to explain technology to our pensioners, but they don’t seem to understand.

“We are very happy to have EFCC and ICPC come look into what we are doing.

“It is not within our domain. It is within the domain of the GIFMIS platform. It is within the domain of the technology that is domiciled within the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation.”

Nigerian Pensioners Demand Payment Of Arrears

Osun-PensionersThe National Union of Pensioners has asked the Federal Government to pay the 18 months’ arrears of the 33% pension increase owed pensioners since the review in 2010.

The pensioners were reacting to the payment of 24 months out of the total 42 months owed them.

They say apart from the paramilitary pensioners, other beneficiaries of the increase such as the railway corporation, universities, the Police and electricity workers are yet to fully benefit from the scheme.

They asked for more since their pension has been due for review since 2015.

Reacting to the pensioners’ outcry, the Executive Secretary of the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate, Sharon Ikeazor said that the 2016 budget did not make provision for the payment of the arrears.

She, however, explained that the agency is working with the relevant players in the pension sector to resolve the issue.

She also assured the pensioners that the verification of pensioners which was suspended in 2014 would resume to ensure that every pensioner is accounted for and paid as and when due.

NLC Calls Off Planned Strike On Pension Fraud

The Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) has called off its planned protest and industrial action which was scheduled for the 10th of April 2013 across the nation.

The labour group however gave the Federal Government an ultimatum to fulfill all agreements by the end of April or risk an industrial action without any warning.

Addressing journalist in Abuja on Tuesday, the acting president of the congress; Mr Promise Adewusi said the decision of the labour group is in consideration of moves by the Federal Government to sufficiently meet with the demands of the congress and National Union of Pensioners.

Such moves according to Mr Adewusi includes the setting up of a joint committee headed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation to harmonise payments as well as resolve sundry matters connected with pension payment and administration of pension funds.

He however warned that the industrial action will resume without warning if by the end of April the Federal Government fails to implement all it has promised to do.

According to the labour leader, the Federal Government among other things, accepted to restore the check-off dues of the national union of pensioners which had been withheld for one year.

President Goodluck Jonathan had on Monday ordered the immediate payment of check off dues of pensioners in the country during a meeting he held with the leadership of the the Nigeria Labour Congress, the Trade Union Congress and the Nigerian Union of Pensioners at the Presidential Villa.

It also ordered the withdrawal from the court the case between the Federal Government and the union in respect of the pension payment/matters.

The NLC also directed the joint committee to resolve all issues pertaining to the immediate payment of all pension arrears to deserving pensioners, resumption of inconclusive verification exercises of 2010/2011 and a review of pension payment to reflect 53.4 per cent wage increase to workers in 2010 and the payment of the N18,000 minimum wage.