The Governor of Ogun State, Dapo Abiodun, apologized to pensioners in the state on Wednesday for unpaid gratuities since 2011.

Abiodun apologized in Abeokuta during the payment of N500 million in gratuity to state and local government retirees.

The governor, who expressed concern about the backlog of gratuities, stated that the apology was extended on behalf of the previous government since the entitlements were inherited liabilities.

As the son of retired teachers, Abiodun said that he could not have turned a blind eye to the plight of pensioners.

“I have living parents, they are also pensioners and there is no way I would have wished this upon my parents and I’m sure no child will wish their parents go through what you are going through.

“On behalf of the previous administration, I apologise,” he said.

He said the N500m presented to 257 beneficiaries represented the quarterly payment of gratuity to the state retirees.

Abiodun assured them of his commitment to the payment pensions and gratuities, just as urged the senior citizens to take advantage of the administration’s various social intervention programmes.

He said “Though these payments are inherited liabilities from past Government but I am assuring you that the process of paying these gratuities have started and will definitely continue. This is a promise made and promise kept. I promise to do this on a quarterly basis.

“Apart from the payment of monetary entitlements, let me also assure our elder statesmen and women that we are committed to providing other opportunities for them under our social welfare scheme.”

In his address, the Chairman of Nigerian Union of Pensioners (NUP), Waheed Oloyede urged the governor to increase the quarterly gratuity payment from N500m to N1billion.

Oloyede applauded the governor for his commitment to the welfare of the pensioners and workers in the state.