The contentious N1.68 billion in unpaid benefits allegedly owed to retirees in Kwara state by the government appears to have no end in sight.
The debt allegedly accumulated by the previous administration later became a legal battleground between the government and the retirees in the past year.
According to publicly available information, the Nigeria Union of Pensioners, NUP, has threatened to take the case back to court in the New Year. The state government, on the other hand, claims that it owes no money to retirees.
When the legal battle began, the state government won in the high court, but the NUP appealed and won in the Appellate Court. The government then appealed the decision to the Supreme Court, where the NUP was later defeated.
According to reports, the retirees were instructed, among other things, to return to the state where the lawsuit was originally lost. The NUP, instead of proceeding to the state High Court as instructed, went to the Industrial Court, where it was similarly defeated.
According to him, “NUP lost that case at the Supreme Court and even Industrial Court, but in January 2022 we are preparing to approach the Appeal court where we initially won.
“In the previous two months or so, we’ve sent Governor Abdulrazaq Abdulrahman a series of letters requesting a round table discussion on this issue. They haven’t yielded any beneficial results when I chat with you.”
Recall that in 2020, hundreds of dissatisfied pensioners marched through Ilorin under the banner of “Concerned Pensioners of Kwara State” to protest unpaid pending pension benefits totaling N1.68 billion since 2008, during Senator Bukola Saraki’s government.