A Niger Delta activist and youth advocate, Comrade Keneware Emmanuel, has accused the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa-led administration in Delta State of “downright neglect and abandonment of pensioners of the state.”
This was contained in an open letter Emmanuel dispatched to the governor, copies of which were made available to journalists in Warri on Tuesday.
The activist popularly known in the region as “The Pentiger” lamented the pitiable state of retirees, just as he appealed to the c Okowa to “pay the retirees of the state who dedicated their life serving the state and the nation,” before he leaves office.
He, however, expressed grave concern over the alleged carefree attitude of the governor to the wailing cries of the teeming pensioners who have been demanding for their pensions and gratuities.
He said, “It is saddening and regrettable that Governor Okowa, who is seeking elections in an exalted position as vice president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, would refuse to pay old pensioners who dedicated their life, efforts and service for the state for 35 years.
“The curse and negative words of old people are powerful and can destroy ones destiny. Yet I wonder why Governor Okowa will play dumb to their plight and allow them to travel to Asaba to be protesting over their gratuity and pension. What a shame?”
The activist also said Okowa could not play ignorant over the matter saying the governor is very much aware of the plight of the pensioners.
The letter read partly, “Your Excellency sir, it is displeasing to see that your ‘Prosperity for all Deltans agenda’ didn’t capture the poor old retirees of the state and it is quite alarming.
“As a leader who has served in various capacities and is aspiring to be the number two man of this country, you know the power of the tongue in old people. Hence, they need not to be treated as thrash.
“I therefore put pen to paper to urge you to do the needful as many of them couldn’t make it to enjoy their gratuity and retirement benefits.”