By Sunday Ani
Retirees of the parastatals in Enugu State have passionately appealed to the state governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, to save them from massive untimely death by urgently directing the concerned agency to commence the payment of their entitlements.
The senior citizens lamented that their inability to access their pension entitlements many years after their retirement had rendered many of them unable to afford even one square meal per day.
A statement signed by Mr. Ferdinand Okonkwo on behalf of the affected pensioners, expressed the pensioners’ gratitude to the Governor for making it possible for them to undergo verification and biometric capturing early this year.
The pensioners drawn from Library Board, Daily Star Newspaper, Water Corporation, Rural Electrification Board, Enugu State Broadcasting Service (ESBS), Arts and Culture and Tourism Board, among others, expressed hope that the Governor would meet their expectation.
Part of the statement read: “We are very happy that the state Governor, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, sometime in March or April, directed that we undergo verification and biometric capturing, so that the state government could start paying our deserved entitlements. Since then, we have been waiting patiently to receive an alert to assuage our pains and predicament, but to no avail.
“As a result, we have been subjected to excruciating pains exacerbated by the harsh living conditions currently plaguing the country. Many of our colleagues have died of hunger without accessing their pension entitlements.
“Worse still is that we have been faced with severe difficulty of securing medical care for members of our respective families and dependants, thereby making us more vulnerable to diseases and death.”
The retirees appealed to the Governor to save them from imminent death. They reminded the Governor of how he raised their hope during the last Workers’ Day celebration at Okpara Square, where he expressed his administration’s readiness to address the problems confronting parastatals in the state.
The statement added: “We need to survive this turbulent period. We need to feed our family, and take care of our health needs. Besides, we need to pay our children’s school fees. As senior citizens who served our fatherland meritoriously, we have no other means of livelihood except to fall back on our pension. So, we beg our amiable governor to make it possible for us to start receiving our due entitlements.”
They also commended Ugwuanyi’s administration for the relative peace and political stability in the state, even as they urged the Enugu people to continue to support the Governor to enable him to sustain the enhanced living condition, especially for the less-privileged and rural dwellers across the state.