The Ogun State Government has inaugurated a contributory pensions’ scheme review committee and another committee to oversee consequential adjustments in pensions paid to retirees in the State, and reiterated its commitment to solve all lingering issues related to deductions within the next few months.
Penpushing reports that, the committee was set up by Governor Dapo Abiodun who explained that the two committees should be dispassionate and allow reason to prevail in their deliberations and submissions on the way forward for Labour-Government relationship.
The Secretary to the State Government, Tokunbo Talabi who represented the Governor while Inaugurating committee at the Governor’s office, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta on Tuesday, noted that the welfare of the workforce, whether retired or serving, is on top burner for the administration,
Penpushing further reports that, Talabi said nothing other than the welfare and wellbeing of the people informed the inauguration of the committees, stressing that the government was fully committed to its promises to put a stop to deduction of workers’ salaries as from the end of July.
“The government is fully committed to its promises to put a stop to deduction of workers’ salaries as from the end of July. From the end of this month, our workforce will be paid gross and our Administration would not renege on its promise to settle all outstanding deductions by the end of this year”, he said.
“The amount of money that is outstanding on the deduction part is humongous and the government is committing that between now and the end of the year, we will find the way to cover the N10bn so that we can erase issues relating to deductions from our table’, he explained.
Penpushing also reports that, Talabi while noting that part of the plan of government was to raise a bond to settle part of issues relating to pensions, added that since labour kicked against the idea, the state government had had to look for other ways to settle the issues.
The scribe speaking on the issue of minimum pension and its workability in the state, said that it is the belief of the Governor that the Consequential Pensions Adjustment Committee would come up with a plan that is acceptable and implementable.
Penpushing further reports that, Talabi on the issue of leave allowance, noted that the allowance would by payment of leave allowances alongside staff salaries, stressing that government have commitment to resolve the issues surrounding the gratuities and payment of leave allowance.
“We also have the commitment of what we will do with some of the gratuities, the payment of the leave allowance. We’ve agreed, it is the same strategy we have adopted, the strategy is stop bleeding, start filling the hole; we are going to put the leave allowance as part of the salaries,” he said
Penpushing also reports that, he assured that the state government, had been able to solve issues relating to the promotion of its workers for the year 2018, 2019 and 2020, adding that the promotion for year 2021 and 2022 which are legitimately due would also be passionately looked into by the government.
The Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Emmanuel Bankole earlier assured government of the commitment of labour in the state to all actions that would put smiles on the face of the workforce in the state.
Penpushing also reports that, Bankole while commending the sincerity of purpose of Governor Dapo Abiodun, said that Labour in the state came to the table with an open mind, while in same vein, the Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners(NUP), Comrade Waheed Oloyede commended the Governor for the prompt payment of monthly pensions to pensioners in the state.
The pensioners boss pointed out that the decision to look into the Consequential Pensions Adjustment of pensioners in the state was a welcome development, stating that it is the belief of the union that the committee would look into the adjustment of pensions and come up with an acceptable report that would in turn be approved and implemented by the state government.
Penpushing reports that, the government team for the Contributory Pensions Scheme Review Committee includes the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Alhaji Hassan Adekunle as chairman, while the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics (State Pension Board), Mr.Babajide Macjob as Secretary.
The other members are the Permanent Secretaries in the ministries of Budget and Planning, Bureau of Establishment and Training, Bureau of State Pensions, Bureau of Service Matters, Bureau of Local Government Pensions, the State’s Accountant General, Solicitor General and Directors, among others.
Penpushing further reports that,the Organized Labour’s team is headed by the Chairman of Trade Union Congress; Comrade Lasisi Akeem, while other Labour leaders in the team are Adebiyi Olusegun, Isa Olude, Hameed Ademola, Modupe Steve, Chairman, Nigeria Labour Congress, Emmanuel Bankole and Akeem Balogun.
Meanwhile, it is recalled that the Ogun State Government and the organized labor in the state signed a Memorandum of Action on the 1st of July, 2022 to put an end to the strike and also settle the bottleneck around issues related to workers and pensioners welfare in the state.
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