Monday, 19 September 2016

Pensioner slumps, dies after inability to buy hypertension drugs

A Local Government retiree in Benue, Mr.
Agada Ocheme, on Sunday, slumped after
a fruitless search for money to purchase
drugs to treat his ailment.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that
aged Ocheme, who could not secure money to
purchase his regular hypertension drugs,
slumped at his Makurdi residence and had to be
rushed to a hospital.
Speaking to NAN on the incidence, one of his
children who preferred anonymity, said his
father had been hypertensive since leaving
service in 2014, and had been on drugs for
effective management of the ailment.
He said that his father served 35 years in the
services of the local government system before
retirement in August 2014.
The son regretted that since retirement “no kobo
has been paid to my father, either as pension or
gratuity.”
He attributed the slumping of his father to
“fatigue arising from long hours of trekking to
solicit for financial assistance to procure the
drugs.”
“My father had just returned from his outing
when the unfortunate event occurred and we
immediately rushed him to a private hospital in
Makurdi, where he is being treated,” he said.
He said his father had exhausted his credit limit
at the hospital where he had been receiving
treatment for the ailment.
According to him, the doctors have refused
further treatment until his outstanding debts are
cleared.
He said the father developed the ailment shortly
after he retired from active service and his
entitlement were not paid.
” My father became hypertensive shortly after
he retired from active service and his situation
worsened when it dawned on him that he it
would take a long time before he is paid his
entitlements.
“His situation deteriorated in the past few
weeks owing to paucity of funds to purchase
recommended drugs to abate the ailment,” he
said.
The son, who is still a student, lamented his
inability to give a helping hand as he still
depended on relatives for his needs.
He therefore appealed to the state government
to immediately commence payment of arrears
of pensions and gratuities to save the lives of
retirees.
NAN recalls that sometime ago, Gov Samuel
Orom said he had given approval for the release
of N400 million for the settlement of pensions
and gratuity of local government and state
pensioners.
He had told the national leadership of Benue
State University Alumni Association at Benue
People’s House recently, that N200 million
would be paid to pensioners and another N200
million as gratuity to local government retirees.
He had assured that the money would be
sourced from the budget support fund of
N4.3billion from the Federal Government.