About 300,000 pensioners who worked in federal establishments but were disengaged without benefits, mostly because their establishments were privatised without provision for such benefits, have been duly enlisted and are drawing monthly pension.

The Executive Secretary of federal government’s Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) Sharon Ikeazor disclosed this in Yola, capital of Adamawa.

She added the federal government pays this category of pensioners about N9 billion monthly pension through the PTAD.

The PTAD is an agency under the Federal Ministry of Finance established to manage pensions for certain categories of federal pensioners.

Ikeazor, who visited Yola to oversee an ongoing verification for former workers of the Savannah Sugar Company, Numan, also disclosed the PTAD is saving the federal government N4.9 billion annually as a result of the payroll cleanup it achieved through its civil service verification exercise.

She told reporters: “During the privatisation exercise (of the Olusegun Obasanjo era), most of these outfits were sold liability-free to the companies that bought them.

“The liabilities were left for the federal government to shoulder. Remember we did verification for Delta Steel as well.

“Delta Steel was privatised in 2005 and the pensioners were left without payment, just like the Savannah Sugar Company which was sold also without provision for the pensioners.”

Some of the other former federal establishments whose pensioners the PTAD has similarly rescued include Nigeria Reinsurance Corporation, NICON Insurance Corporation, NITEL/MTel and New Nigerian Newspapers (NNN) Ltd.

Giving insights to categories of pensioners that PTAD caters to, the executive secretary said: “We have carried out civil service pension in the six geopolitical zones.

“We placed over 100,000 (civil service) pensioners back on the payroll. That is those who were dropped off the payroll because of past maladministration.

“We’ve also done the police pension where we put the war affected police officers on pension, those who had been long forgotten.”

Speaking at the opening of the Yola PTAD office, located at the Federal Secretariat in Jimeta, Sharon Ikeazor said the office was set up to bring the services of PTAD close to the people.