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After nearly a decade of waiting, retired employees of the Abia State government are finally experiencing relief and joy as Governor Alex Otti fulfills his campaign pledge to settle the backlog of pension arrears accumulated by past administrations.

On Thursday, tears of happiness flowed freely among the senior citizens as they began to receive credit alerts, signaling the arrival of long-awaited funds into their accounts. Some retirees were pleasantly surprised to find substantial amounts, with figures reaching as high as N1.8 million and beyond.

Governor Otti, speaking during a gathering at Christ the King Catholic Church (CKC) in Aba, confidently assured the pensioners that their days of waiting were over. He declared to the congregation that by the end of the day, all retirees would have reason to smile as their accounts would reflect the payment of their pension arrears.

True to his word, credit alerts began to inundate the phones of pensioners across Abia State and beyond, marking the fulfillment of Otti’s promise and bringing immense relief to the recipients.

Confirming the heartwarming development on Friday, Comrade Chukwuemeka Irondi, the state Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Pensioners (NUP), expressed gratitude to Governor Otti for honoring his commitment to the retirees. He lauded Otti’s dedication to the welfare of pensioners and praised him as a reliable leader who cares deeply for the people of Abia.


While the exact amount received by each retiree is yet to be confirmed, Chief Emeka Okezie, the Coordinator of the Concerned Abia Pensioners (CAP), revealed that payments began as early as Wednesday. Okezie, who had led protests against the previous administration’s neglect of pensioners, expressed satisfaction with Otti’s proactive approach in addressing the plight of retirees.

In appreciation of Otti’s efforts, CAP announced plans to organize a solidarity march to express gratitude for the governor’s compassion and decisive action in resolving the pension arrears issue.

Although Otti’s initial deadline to clear the arrears by December had passed, he later clarified that the task was more extensive than anticipated due to the discovery of arrears dating back to 2014. Despite this setback, Otti remained resolute in his commitment to the retirees, assuring them that their pension arrears would be settled by the end of March 2024.

The payment of pension arrears marks a significant milestone in Governor Otti’s administration, underscoring his administration’s dedication to prioritizing the welfare of retirees and ensuring financial security for elderly citizens in Abia State.

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