Delta State Retirees Protest Unpaid Entitlements, Disrupt Official Event

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Written By O. Love

Delta State retirees on Thursday protested against the unpaid entitlements and disrupted an empowerment programme organised by the state government.

The retirees from primary schools and local government councils demonstrated on Thursday.

The protesters who were dressed in black attire, barricaded the entrance to the event centre along Okpanam Road Asaba, chanting and singing anti-Governor Ifeanyi Okowa songs.

Some of them displayed placards saying, “Okowa, pay us our pensions and gratuities now,” “Okowa, stop killing the retirees. Retirees are suffering and dying daily,” “Governor Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, pay us our gratuities and pension from 2014 till date. 35 years of service is not a joke, pay us now,” “Okowa, the blood of the dead retirees are on your head.”

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They described the state governor as a ‘heartless and wicked’ man who does not care about the lives of retirees in the state.

Speaking with our correspondent, one of the retirees, who identified himself as Alhaji Ismaila Isitua, lamented that the state governor was wicked towards retirees who worked and served the state for 35 years without blemish.

“For good 35 years, we served the state and retired without any blemish now what is due to us, the state government said we won’t get our entitlements, is that not wickedness. Since 2014 till date, we have not been paid our pensions and gratuities.

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“Our colleagues are dying every day. We are retired primary school teachers and local government council workers. This is heartless and wickedness of the highest order.”

As at the time of filing this report, it was gathered that the Secretary to the State Government, (SSG), Patrick Ukah was already meeting with the leadership of the protesters in his office.

However, the protesters had vowed to continue with their protest until their demands were met. Several Hilux vehicles loaded with armed men of the Nigeria police from the state police command Asaba were seen around the environment.

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