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How Okowa Tried To Save ‘Embarrassing’ Moment Delta Pensioners Laid Siege To Govt House Over N54bn Unpaid Gratuities



Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta state, Thursday, tried to save an embarrassing moment hundreds of retired primary school teachers besieged the Government House, Asaba, crippling government activities in protest over the non-payment of severance package running into N54billion, dependable sources have said. understands that a worried Okowa who was at Osun State attending a PDP governorship election mega rally had put a phone call through to his Chief of Staff, Festus Ovie Agas, and directed him to address the protesting retirees.

The angry retirees had blocked the Government House’s entrance gate to prevent any entry and exit while chanting solidarity and anti-Okowa songs to drive home their demands.

It was the second time in recent months that the retired teachers had staged a similar protest to demand their gratuities with no result from the state government.

The protesting teachers who retired after 35 years of meritorious service to the state and were yet to be paid their seven years of gratuities had vowed not to evacuate the entrance until the governor address them.

Sources privy to the development revealed that an embarrassing Okowa who is currently the vice presidential candidate of the PDP had quickly called his Agas to pleaded with the retirees for time with a promise to attend to their demands by way of payment.


The protest which lasted for several hours led to a gridlock along Anwai Road, Asaba as the retirees sat on the road demanding to see the governor face-to-face to explain why he refused to pay their gratuities.

The protesting retired teachers numbering over 3000, looked pale, while carrying placards with different inscriptions such as “Okowa pay our money, Okowa, pay our money, Okowa”, “Okowa, which is important, your VP ambition or our gratuities.”

“Okowa, wickedness does not pay.”, “Okowa you have less than eight months to go, please pay us our gratuities.”, “Your wickedness has reached God and you will never get that VP come 2023.” among others.

Speaking on behalf of the retirees, Mrs C.E. Ejieh pleaded with the state government to declare a state of emergency in the public primary schools’ retirees gratuities’ payment and also to ensure that the over N5.9billion owed by some local councils in the state are duly remitted to the Bureau of Local Government that is in charge of the payment.

The leader of the protesting retirees, however, lamented that “In spite of repeated promises made during meetings with a delegation of the state government, Governor Okowa bluntly refused to honour his words and has left the retirees in the cold, choosing to pursue a vice presidential ambition.


“In the face of public outcry to the governor to demonstrate a humane sense of leadership on the matter, nothing tangible has been done even when it was clear that the resources to reduce the burden of debt owed the retirees were available to the state government.”

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