This appeal followed the save our soul visit paid to the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Lekan Balogun, by the executive members of the group of pensioners under the aegis of Oyo State 2002 Pensioners at the Alarere residence of the monarch.
Olubadan who sympathized with the pensioners on the over a decade pension arrears urged the governor to look at their plight and make them happy by paying the outstanding money invoking the doctrine of continuity in government.
According to the monarch, ”we cannot blame the governor for the huge debt the successive administrations have been ignoring, but government is a continum and this places a huge moral burden on the governor and government of the state which the people served meritoriously to be called upon to look into it”.
Led by the Chairman and Secretary of the group, Alhaji Mustapha Bamgbade and Comrade Olu Afolabi respectively, the pensioners pleaded with Olubadan to help prevail on Governor Makinde described as ‘kind-hearted and peace-loving’ to show mercy on them.
Recalling the circumstances that led to their premature retirement in 2002 by the government of the late Lam Adesina, Alhaji Bamgbade explained that the late governor was misled into sacking them with a view that the exercise would save cost of governance.
Unfortunately, he said, “those that advised the governor on our sack refused to give him the details of the financial implication of such exercise and this led to our problem since then because, by the time the governor became aware of the financial effect of his action, it was too late to revert it.
”We kept on agitating for our pension payment since 2002 and not until 2015 when our prayers were answered and since then, we have been asking for the payment of our pension dues for 13 years (2002-2015) which had since remained unpaid”, the Chairman added.
Lamenting that more than half of the group had died due to lack of money to take good care of their health, Alhaji Bamgbade said the group had no reason to begrudge Governor Makinde who is doing commendably well in terms of pensioners’ welfare.
He nevertheless pleaded with Olubadan to appeal to the governor to extend his virtue as a compassionate governor to them by wiping their tears through payment of the pension arrears.