Benue Pensioners on Wednesday, protested on the streets of Makurdi over backlog of pension being owed them by the state.
Members of the Association of Concerned Pensioners cried out for swift action o be taken to pay them as it is affecting their ability to cater for their family.
During the protest, the men said that commercial motorcycle riders commonly known as Okada men are taking their wives because they are unable to provide the basic needs.
They appealed to the Speaker of the Benue State House of Assembly and the gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Rt. Hon Titus Uba to come to their rescue.
The senior citizens carried placards with different inscriptions and marched to the state assembly complex in Makurdi on September 21, 2022.
According to reports, the pensioners were first denied access on the ground that the Speaker was not on seat but after refusing to back down, they were allowed to meet with management of the assembly.
A spokesperson for the group said; “This is for your information and necessary action. It is no longer news that the Government of Benue State is owning her pensioners 37 and 74 months pension arrears at the State and Local Government Levels respectively. Our backlog of gratuity remains a no go area and is totally forgotten.
“As a result of non-payment of pension and gratuity, pensioners are dying on a daily bases as most of them are on special diet and drugs but could not afford even a maintenance ration or drugs.
“This has caused untold hardship to pensioners, including the inability to afford decent food, Housing, payment of hospital bills as well as inability to pay children’s school fees leading to their being sent out of school by the school authorities, thereby frustrating their future.
“The concerned Benue State Pensioners have become scavengers, Refugees destitute and beggars on our fatherland that we served with zeal and meritocracies, if we do not beg, we will not eat.
“Because of hardship occasioned by non-payment of Pension and gratuity, we have lost our wives to Okada Boys, ‘because we are no longer economically viable to carter for them. Life has become miserable, meaningless and unbearable.”