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Saturday, 16 July 2016

N700Million Naria Pension Fraud Uncovered In Imo State


The Imo State Government has said that it has uncovered a high level of fraud that has been on for many years in the state Pension Board. The fraud, the sate said was allegedly perpetrated by highly placed officials in the Board in concert with some retired civil servants.
The disclosure was made recently by the Chief of Staff, Government House, Owerri, Chief Uche Nwosu in an interview with Daily Sun.
According to Nwosu, the state government discovered the fraud following an audit panel it instituted adding that those indicted by the findings have been removed including the boss of the Board and an entirely new staff deployed to the Pension Board.
The Chief of Staff stated that the fund resulted from the accumulated pension of N1.3 billion in contrast to the authentic pension of N600 million which is an increase of above 100 per cent.

Reacting to non payment of pension arrears that recently resulted in protest in the state by pensioners, Nwosu stated that the state government was not in denial that it was not owing Pensioners. He, however, promised that the state government would by the end of this month (July) clear the arrears, noting that the state government had in recent months embarked on cleaning the Aegean stable in the State Pension Board as well as ‘ghost pensioners’ discovered during the audit probe.
Nwosu stated that the Governor, Rochas Okorocha has the interest of Pensioners at heart and that the State Labour Congress has been briefed on the government commitment to clear the Pension arrears very soon.
He also refuted the reports that the state is ‘broke’ following a recent report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBs) that listed Imo State as one of the states that risked bankruptcy as a result of its low Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
The Chief of Staff said that the fundamentals of the state’s economy remains strong in spite of the financial downturn in the nation’s economy. In this regards, he said that following the reorganization of the state’s internal revenue sources, the State’s IGR has increased appreciably to over N600 million a month.
He assured that the government has designed strategies that would further increase the state’s finances and make it less dependent on federal allocation.


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