The public outcry is coming on the heels of myriad of complaints by members of the public, especially retirees and deceased Next-of-Kins who claim that staff of the Bureau of Local Government Pensions, (Governor’s Office) Asaba demand and collect illegal payment before processing their retirement and death benefits .
A statemnt issued by the state Director of Information, Mr. Paul Osahor and made available to Blank NEWS Online on Thursday, 14th April, 2016 however described the fraudsters as “pension agents” who pose as staff.
“The attention of the Delta State Bureau of Local Government Pensions, (Governor’s Office) Asaba, has been drawn to the fact that some unsuspecting retirees/deceased Next-of-Kin(s) particularly of Primary School/Local Government Education Authorities extraction in the State are being extorted by some unscrupulous and dubious individuals outside the Bureau, who have constituted themselves into pension “agents”.
“These individuals pretend to assist the retirees/deceased Next-of-Kin(s) with processing their retirement/death benefits in the Bureau and thereby collect/charge exorbitant sum of money for their services. More worrisome is that these “agents” charge their prey various sums of money under the guise that they are going to settle officers of the Bureau in order to facilitate payment of their retirement benefits.
“The management of the Bureau wishes to state without any form of contradiction that the Bureau does not collect money under any guise from retirees/families of deceased employees before processing their retirement benefits and has not engaged any “agent” to do so on its behalf. Members of the public, particularly Primary School/Local Government Education Authorities retirees are by this medium advised to process their files/documents directly to the Bureau and avoid the use of a third party or “agent” in order not to fall prey to the antics of these fraudsters.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the Bureau operates an open door policy in pension administration and upholds the sanctity of first-come-first-serve policy in effecting payment to retirees of deceased employees.
“Members of the public are by this announcement advised to be vigilant and report any of such “agents” to the Bureau for prosecution. Authorities of the State Universal basic Education, Asaba and Local Government Education Authorities are also advised to take note.
“Members of the public should please be guided”, the statement warned.
Meanwhile, a retiree who pleaded anonymity frowned at the government statement and insists that the perpetrators are genuine staff of the Bureau of Local Government Pensions, (Governor’s Office) Asaba, adding that the same rot and corrupt practices which also thrives at the State Establishment can only stop when the agencies responsible for processing their retirement benefits are fully overhauled.
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