The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) has started a new round of biometric verification procedures for roughly 21,000 Federal Government pensioners who were not confirmed during a previous exercise in the southwest part of the country in 2019 but were genuine retirees.
The Executive Secretary of PTAD, Dr. Chioma Ejikeme, told reporters in Ibadan at the biometric verification of federal civil service retirees under the Defined Benefit Scheme, DBS, that the exercise was primarily for Federal Government retirees who were left out for one reason or another in the 2019 exercise, which was held in the Southwest.
“What we’re doing right now is a mop-up verification,” she explained. It’s not like the few verifications we did in 2019 when we had to check the verification after the review, and in the process of validating the verification, we relocated retirees who were on our payroll but hadn’t been verified.”
“As a result, several of them have returned, and this was in October 2020.” Then we shifted about 21,000 unverified pensioners who were still on the payroll. So they’ve been coming back, claiming to be genuine retirees who were qualified, and we’ve chosen to come back and perform a mop-up verification because of the numbers.”
“So, this is for all those who believe they are unknown, that they have not been apprehended, that they are genuine.”
“We’re urging everyone to take advantage of this opportunity to come in and get verified because without it, we won’t be able to access our database.”
She did say, however, that the agency had gone to great lengths to eliminate the activities that plagued the previous pension system.
“When PTAD was founded, it inherited a slew of issues that had plagued the old pension offices, especially the Police, Civil Service, Customs, Immigration, and Prisons (CIPPO), as well as the poorly managed and underfunded Boards of Trustees of parastatals and agencies.”
Some of the pensioners expressed satisfaction with the executive secretary’s ‘change agenda.’
Mr. Seyi Adeniyi, a federal government pensioner, remarked that pension management in Nigeria, particularly as it pertains to government pensioners, was not up to par.
“The system was known for fraud, not by government employees who diverted cash designated for pensioners for personal use.”
“The situation has improved by means of the PTAD management’s efforts and structures, which have sanitized the system and given pensioners hope.”
He went on to say, “A lot of material and human resources have been deployed to make the agency deliver on its goal.”
Mr. Kunle Ajibade, a retiree who regarded the exercise as very seamless, praised PTAD administration for putting in place a water-tight framework for the exercise’s flawless conduct.
“The process is quite lovely and smooth,” Ojo stated. You won’t have any problems once you have all of your documentation; you’ll be done in a matter of minutes.”