- Officers who fought in the Nigeria civil war, have asked that they be paid pension
- The officers say many of their comrades have perished due to negligence on the part of the government
- They plead that they be paid pension for services rendered within the time of the war
Servicemen who fought in the Biafra war have asked that the Buhari-led government pay them pension for services rendered in those years.
The civil war officers who voluntarily retired or were discharged from service under the 1976 – 1979 military administration, say they want their 38 years pension arrears paid.
Vanguard reports that the group made the demand in a statement signed by its National Coordinator, retired Sgt. Kasali Busari and made available in Ibadan on Tuesday.
The Group of Able Voluntary Retired or Discharged T Years and Above Military Service decried the non payment of their military pension benefit from 1978 till date.
They referred to the Federal Military Government circular No 4/1977, dated March 30, 1977, which qualified them as payable pensioners.
“The First Republic of Nigeria 1963 (intake) officers and other ranks with the service of 10 years and less than 15 years are eligible to be paid.
“They deserved to be paid pension at the rate of 30 percent of terminal salary or 40 percent in the case of armed forces personnel,” the group quoted .
The group said that their representations to several governments over the years had not yielded positive results.
The statement said that the group was awaiting the payment of their pension, having been incorporated in the 2015 general military pensions verification exercise under President Muhammadu Buhari.
“We are group of the first republic of Nigeria 1963 (intake) that practically prosecuted the past Nigeria and defunct Biafra civil war between 1967 and 1970 respectively.
“We thereafter voluntarily retired or discharged from 1978 to 1992 in accordance with the past federal military government regime from 1976 to 1979 published circular No 4/1977 dated 30th March 1977,” it said.
The statement added: “The circular indicated that when such officers served for 10 years or more but less than 15 years, they will be paid a pension at the rate of 30 percent of terminal salary (40 percent in the case of Armed Forces personnel).
“Majority of the 1963 (intake) that actively prosecuted the past Nigeria and defunct biafra civil war already qualified as payable pensioners from 1978 till date.”
“After we were retired or discharged under the protected FMG published circular and decree of 1977 and 1979 respectively, we were not paid our military pension benefit.”
The statement said that the first republic of Nigeria 1963 (intake) officers and other ranks with the service of above ten years and less than 15 years in the Nigeria Armed Forces had not been paid their military pension. It stated that they have not been paid after the general military pensions verification exercise for the past twelve months.
“It will be unfortunate to subject these courageous citizens to untold hardship in their old age when as a matter of law, the right to receive pension is guaranteed by the provision of the section 173 of the 1999 constitution,” the group said.