Abia PDP Accuses Gov Alex Otti of Insincerity On Pension Arrears Issue | #NwokeukwuMascot


…Abia PDP Accuses Governor Alex Otti of Insincerity Regarding Pension Arrears | #NwokeukwuMascot

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 The Abia State chapter of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) has launched a scathing critique against Governor Alex Otti, accusing him of insincerity in handling the issue of pension arrears in the state. According to a press release issued by the party's Vice Chairman and Acting State Publicity Secretary, Hon. Elder Abraham Amah, Governor Otti's actions regarding pension payments have been characterized by deception and manipulation.

Previously, we had reported the stance of the Nigeria Union of Pensioners Abia state chapter, as articulated in a press release, refuting claims of agreement to waive their outstanding entitlements, contrary to assertions made by Governor Alex Otti and the government.

In the press release captioned, “Alex Otti and his Insincerity in handling the Abia pension Arrears“ highlights Governor Otti's recent claims of clearing nine or ten years' worth of pension arrears, which have been met with skepticism and opposition from both pensioners and the Abia PDP. Discrepancies in the number of months cleared have further fueled doubts about the authenticity of Otti's assertions.  The Abia PDP condemns this tactic as exploitative and accuses Otti of taking advantage of the desperation of pensioners for his own political gain.

The press release reads in full, “The Abia PDP has once again, noticed the characteristic, yet unproductive efforts by the State governor, Alex Otti to seek cheap popularity by peddling lies to confuse and deceive the good but unsuspecting people of Abia State. This time, he has targeted Abia's elder statesmen; pensioners, by using them to promote his self-serving agenda of building capacity where none exists. 

“In the last two months, Abia pensioners have been trending for the wrong reasons, wherein governor Alex Otti claimed that he had cleared their outstanding nine years or ten years pension arrears. To show further proof that the claim is false and embellished with visible lies, there are discrepancies in the claim because, Alex Otti, his operatives and the pensioners do not agree on the accurate number of months cleared. While his Commissioner for Finance said nine years, Alex Otti in the United States, said ten years and pensioners insist that only a certain percentage of the nine months arrears owed them since the inception of the Otti administration were cleared. At this point, we will leave the judgment to discerning Abians. 

“Earlier in the week, the enlarged Executive Council-in-session of the Abia chapter of the National Pensioners Union, NUP released a press statement dissociating itself from any agreement entered between the government and pensioners which purportedly agreed that pensioners forgo all outstanding arrears as a condition for the regular payment of their monthly pension. 

“A few days later, Alex Otti, during a press briefing, responded to claims by the enlarged Executive Council-in-session of the NUP, Abia State chapter, that they never agreed to forfeit their outstanding arrears as a condition for the payment of their monthly pensions and said that it was a huge joke for the NUP to come and claim that it was a mistake and that the section should be expunged. 

“The statement made by Alex Otti shows clearly that he willingly took advantage of the desperation of the pensioners to insert that obnoxious clause in that agreement and that is the height of infidelity, especially as he had promised several times, during the campaigns and after the elections that he would clear any pension arrears he met in office. 

“While Abians are distraught and in shock that governor Alex Otti could arm twist and deceive desperate pensioners and tricked them into signing an agreement that makes them forfeit their outstanding pensions, the Abia PDP is not, because it is typical of Alex Otti but we don't want to get used to it as many Abians have already. And that is why we have a sacred duty to hold him to account for his deeds in office. Everything Alex Otti has touched since he became Abia governor has ended in unnecessary controversy and always proving him as one who is always economical with the truth. 

“In other not to bore Abians with the monotony of Alex Otti’s comic errors, we would limit our comment to the current pension controversy, which is one too many and the Abia PDP has reviewed the issue and came to the following conclusions and questions:

“That Alex Otti was not prepared ab initio to pay pension, otherwise he would not have pressured and tricked the leadership of NUP into signing an agreement to forgo its outstanding arrears. 

“Did the agreement entered into with the leadership of the NUP expressly say that the government would claim to have paid in full pension arrears that were forfeited, because Alex Otti at every given opportunity claimed that he has cleared all outstanding pension arrears in Abia?

“The records are clear that in the eight years of Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, which amounts to 96 months, he paid 51 months pension and had an outstanding of 45 months which the NUP has acknowledged several times. Abia PDP wonders how 45 months suddenly turned to 9 or 10 years which Alex Otti consistently referenced during his toxic campaigns as an opposition figure. Unfortunately, he has carried on with his lies to the government and does not understand the boundaries between being in opposition and government.

“Arising from the above, Abia PDP demands an explanation and wants to know where the balance 111 or 99 months are, as Alex Ott claims to have cleared 9 or 10 years arrears and will soon be reflected in Abia State quarterly expenditure records and used to fleece Abians.

“The Abia PDP praises the courage and maturity of the NUP in handling this matter and encourages it to take the matter to arbitration for a quick resolution. It is inappropriate to ask one to forgo one’s arrears as a basis for receiving future entitlements.

“We also call on Alex Otti to desist from saying that he has cleared all outstanding pension arrears because that is not the true position. PDP - Power to the People!“ the release ended.


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