Unpaid Pension: Military Veterans Stages Nationwide Protest
By Alex Uangbaoje, Kaduna
Military pensioners across the country has vowed to storm Abuja, the Nigeria Federal Capital Territory and other states capital to protest their unpaid pension allowance by the Federal government.
The pensioners disclosed this in Kaduna on Friday during a press conference to express their disappointment for the All Progressive Congress (APC), led government.
According to the spokesperson of Coalition of Concerned Veterans, Abiodun Durowaiye-Herberts, prior to the 2015 general election, the group met with President Muhammadu Buhari, who was then the APC candidate and also went to the APC headquarter to declare their support and share their plight with them.
“We delivered by mobilising massively to contribute greatly towards his victory at the poll. We are concern about the plight of some of our war vets, who fought in the civil war, but served less than the stipulated period of 15 years before the new policy of 1992 took effect.
” However, considering that these individuals served up to 10 years in active capacity, and were either retired by the military or left service voluntarily but are not catered for in the present military pension policy, whereas their Biafran comrades are taken care of.
“We wish to appeal to Mr. President to consider putting all machinery in motion to bringing these vets back on pension payroll. He said.
He appealed to President Buhari, to as a matter of urgency look into the constitutional provisions of pension review of 5 years with the view to directing relevant government organs to commence immediate review which was last done in 2010.
“This has become necessary in view of the high cost of living because of the fall in the value of Naira.” He added.
Abiodun, laments the wrong signal being sent by the government to serving military personnel who will soon become pensioners, saying, “doing otherwise would definitely dampen their morals towards their primary responsibilities of protecting the territorial integrity of our country, on land, sea and air.”
“In the light of the above, we have mobilised our members across the country to come out with banners and placards, on a 2-day peaceful demonstration, commencing on the eve of the annual ritual to commemorate the Armed Forces remembrance day celebration and to culminate on January 15th, 2017, in order to draw the attention of Mr. President to our plight.”