Retired policemen in Niger on Tuesday joined their colleagues nationwide on a peaceful protest to demand their exit from the Contributory Pension Scheme, CPS.
During the protest, they presented a letter containing their demands to DCP Shehu Abdullahi for transmission to the Inspector-General of Police, IGP, Usman Baba.
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.
He said that 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.
Mr 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 cannot 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, Mr 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 at about 9.45 am taking the protesters through the government house road to the state police headquarters.
NAN further reports that they carried different banners with inscription such as “CPS is a Death Sentence Pension Scheme”, ”No AGM, No Dividend,” among others.