A delegation of Imo State pensioners went to see Governor Rochas Okorocha recently to complain about retired state employees being owed 16-17 months’ pension arrears.
Someone at the meeting informed Naijiant.com that Okorocha told them: “So you people are alive up to now and you didn’t have children to look after you in your old age? You are alive up to now and you are waiting for pension. Nonsense!”
He told them sarcastically to continue waiting. He said he hadn’t even found the money to pay people that are still working and they expected him to pay pensioners.
In a related development, another pensioner claimed that the state government kept requesting that they should go to their Local Government Areas for “verification” in order to be paid. After each exercise, there would be no payment forthcoming. At each “verification” exercise, staff would tell the pensioners that there were still “plenty” of pensioners on the list awaiting payment and the staff were expecting some of them to have died by now.
The pensioner claimed that staff would tell them that instead of the list of pensioners reducing due to death, it was growing. She said that she was sure what the staff were saying came from the governor, as only “the Devil” would have such thoughts.
The Owerri-based pensioner said that the “only thing happening” in the state was Okorocha laying pipes to supply water to the Spibat Estate that he owns, as well as other projects in the area. She claimed that he was carrying out such work to increase the value of the property, which includes very expensive rented accommodation.