The Executive Secretary, Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD), Dr Chioma Ejikeme, has warned pensioners to be wary of scammers who may want to defraud them under the pretense of securing their pension arrears.
Ejikeme gave the warning on Monday in Ilorin while addressing pensioners during the verification organised for pensioners in the North Central geopolitical zone.
The verification was for pensioners in the Federal Government parastatals under the Defined Benefit Scheme not cover under the contributory pension scheme.
The executive secretary told the pensioners that PTAD would never ask any pensioner for money before they can get their pension arrears.
“You must beware of pension fraudsters, you must not be misled by the fraudsters who normally call pensioners to request for processing fees or cash to fast track your complaints for payment of outstanding entitlements.
“PTAD will never request cash from any pensioner to process their pension, so don’t give money to anybody.
“PTAD does not take money from anybody, to put you on the pay roll, to pay your arrears or for doing anything. PTAD does not take a kobo from any pensioners.
“If we are owing you any outstanding, you will get an alert, we will not call you on phone, so you must be careful not to fall prey to these scammers,’’ Ejikeme warned.
She told the pensioners that the exercise would be the last time pensioners would be assembled in large numbers.
Ejikeme also assured the pensioners that the exercise would enable them to receive their pensions promptly and regularly.
She said that pension arrears would be paid as soon as money was made available, adding that the Federal Government was committed to making life easy for pensioners.
The executive secretary said the exercise would last till Oct. 30, in four centres, Ilorin, Minna, Lokoja and Jos while that of the FCT would hold from Nov. 18 to 27 in two centres.
Ejikeme said that all pensioners would be captured during the exercise, adding that sick pensioners would be captured on their sick bed.
She said that next-of-kin of deceased pensioners would also be captured once they provide the necessary documents to enable them receive the gratuity of their deceased relatives.
“We have our mobile verification team for those in the hospital or at home; when I leave this place, I am going with the team to do the mobile verification in hospitals,” she added.
Ejikeme said about 14, 000 pensioners would take part in the verification in the north central, while about 2, 500 pensioners from Kwara would be captured.
According to the executive director, there are over 247, 000 pensioners under the Defined Benefit Scheme out of which over 100, 000 are parastatals pensioners.
Ejikeme noted that after the verification, there would be a cleanup of the database to make sure that those that were on the database were the real pensioners.
“The purpose of the verification is to ensure that it is only those that should be on the database are there.
“The database cleanup will also allow us to know the real number of pensioners, to detect those that have died but their pensions are still being paid,” Ejikeme added.