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Police approve N36bn for Biafran policemen

Posted by By DIPO KEHINDE and BIYI ADEGOROYE on 2005/07/27 | Views: 583 |

Police approve N36bn for Biafran policemen


The Police Pension Office has approved over N36 billion for 1,520 pardoned Biafran policemen, as it announced, Tuesday, that it was shopping for almost N11 billion to settle outstanding entitlements.

The Police Pension Office has approved over N36 billion for 1,520 pardoned Biafran policemen, as it announced, Tuesday, that it was shopping for almost N11 billion to settle outstanding entitlements.

While he was making the announcement in Lagos, the Director of Pensions, Mr Jonathan Biam, said he was waiting for letters of official retirements of the Biafran policemen from the Police Service Commission so that he could go ahead and pay them. But he warned that his office may begin to owe pensioners unless government comes to his rescue.

Biam, who said he had paid over N3 billion to 15,691 pensioners in the last seven months, along with over N927 million paid to 1,391 retirees, spoke of the take-off of a new scheme that would see pensioners collecting their gratuities in their home states.

He said: "This office makes strenuous efforts to pay pensions and gratuity to police retirees and deceased police next-of-kins on the last Wednesday of every month without fail since January 1997 to date. However, the funding of the scheme over the years has not kept pace with the retirement rate.

"The increasing wage bill on pensions and gratuity is not matched by budgetary allocation and the mismatch has resulted into a cumulative deficit of over N10 billion liability."
To make things easy for retirees, Biam said the Board of Trustees of the Police Pensions Office had resolved and directed that the pensions office decentralizes its services through the devolution of more responsibilities and posting of more officers to the state offices.
"The new approach will make payments closer to beneficiaries as well as make the processes effective, shorter, efficient and timely," Biam said.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Information has warned that people caught circulating the defunct Biafran currency would face the full wrath of the law.
The warning followed media reports that the currency is now in circulation in some parts of the country and the African sub-region.

The ministry, in a statement, fingered fraudsters as being behind the circulation, adding that the "worthless and illegitimate currency" was being exchanged for legitimate currency held by unwary victims

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