Protesting retired police officers in Kaduna

By Ngozi Onyeakusi— Retired police officers on Tuesday called on the National Assembly to exempt them from the Contributory Pension Scheme.
Punch reports that the protesting retired officers from 27 states stormed the National Assembly displaying placards with various inscriptions such as ‘NPF
pension defrauding police retirees, SOS,’ ‘Police officers are dying in penury under contributory pension scheme,’ and ‘CPS is a death sentence against police,’ among others.
One of the protesters, Felix Osuigbu, said he has been living a beggarly life as a result of the scheme.
He said, “I served the country for 35 years. I don’t deserve this kind of treatment. I am living in poverty, I don’t have a vehicle, I can’t maintain my family, and I can’t feed well.
“This is because of the scheme we are being enrolled in. I get N25,000 every month. I retired as an ASP with two stars. My mates in the Nigerian Army collected almost N15m after retirement in the same country. I am not happy at all.”
The retirees’ coordinator, Christopher Effiong, said other security agencies had removed their retirees from the pension scheme, saying that the police should not be exempted.

Effiong said, “They are supposed to pay us 80 per cent of our last annual gross pay, what they are giving us is peanut called lump sum. What they are paying us is less than 25 per cent.
Imagine a police inspector being paid N600,000 at the end of 35 years as a lump sum; and between N20,000 and N25,000 per month.
“We are appealing to them to exclude us from the CPS; they have done that for the Nigerian Armed Forces and the DSS. We have come to call on the National Assembly to help us.”

Similarly, in Niger State, retired policemen equally joined their colleagues nationwide in the same protest.
SUPERNEWS Nigeria gathered that during protest, the retired protesting police officers presented a letter containing their demands to DCP Shehu Abdullahi for transmission to the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Usman Baba Alkali.
Retired CSP Madu Danbuwa, who spoke on their behalf, said they decided to embark on the peaceful protest after the authorities ignored previous representations made to them.

According to them after majority of them had put in no fewer than 35 years to serve the country, they were given only a paltry N1.9 million as gratuity, adding that none of them receives a monthly pension of more than N40,000.
He said that some of their colleagues in other security outfits collect 100 per cent of their monthly salaries after leaving service.
Danbuwa said that as a result, many of them had not been able to meet their commitments to their families and other social needs.
“We find it difficult to pay electricity and water bills,” he said.
Also, Hajara Mohammed, one of the retirees, said that many of them died because they could not afford their medical bills.
“Many of us can not afford our medical bills. We also have aged parents we cannot care for, this is unfair. We want to totally exit the CPS,” she said.
Responding, Abdullahi sympathised with the retirees saying; “we are all victims, because one day we will retire and join you.
“I have received your letter. I can assure you that we will send it to the IGP before the end of this week,” he said.
He apologised to the protesters for the inability of the Commissioner of Police, Mr Monday Kuryas, to personally receive them.
The DCP said that Kuryas had gone to Kagara for official engagement.
He then commended them for their peaceful conduct and pleaded that they should return to their homes peacefully.
The protest march started from the Police Officers Mess in Minna about 9.45 am taking the protesters through the Government House road to the state police headquarters.
They carried various banners with inscription such as “CPS is a Death Sentence Pension Scheme”,  ”No AGM, no dividend among others.
Recall that Dailytrust on Monday reported that
retired police officers staged a peaceful protest against pension scheme in Kaduna.
The officers, who marched to the state police command headquarters to air their grievances,  insisted that they were not interested in what they described as “a killer scheme”.
For some time, police officers in the country have been kicking against the pension scheme