72 year old Patrick Airiohuodion is a pensioner who retired from the Nigerian Postal Service, NIPOST, in 2003 after 35 years of meritorious service.
Pa Airiohuodion alleged that NIPOST Management has been short-changing its staff for nearly two decades.
“NIPOST Management defrauded those who are still in service and those who have already retired spanning 1997 till date” he said. Our management prepares pay slips which they send to the Finance Ministry, and when the money is released, they tamper with the figures by preparing fresh pay slips with a high percent slash of the previous amount released by the ministry”.
This he alleged went on from 1997 till 2005, when the use of pay slip was stopped, but the distortion of the accurate due salary never stop.
” I was paid N1.7million in 2003 as gratuity upon retirement on grade level 14, while my mates in other corporations in the same category were paid N16 million. The disparity was unimaginable”
He claimed that his own boss who retired three levels ahead of him, received N18 million gratuity, a situation he described as grossly unfair.
Pa Airiohuodion is not alone in this endless maltreatment of pensioners. He said most of his mates have died due to frustrations from the system. Some, according to the Elder, could not train their children in school, nor build a house to accommodate their family.
The father of six disclosed that some of his colleagues Benjamin Olowodola and co had previously taken NIPOST to court over the same issue.
Pa Airiohuodion is diabetic and he spends minimum of N42,000.00 monthly on his drugs, Insulin and Gavusmet and sometimes he spends more due to other associated ailments, and this leaves him with little or nothing from his monthly pension allowance of N80,000.00 to take care of himself and family, he said.
Pa Patrick Airiohuodion says he and his friends under the aegis of Elders Lagos Mainland Territory have written and submitted their complaint to the Public Complaint Commission in Lagos.
He said the Senate is presently deliberating on a bill to include NIPOST on the Corporation Category B, and he would want the legislators to carry pensioners along in the new salary structure, when it is passed into law.