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Senate wades into N855m LUTH gratuities crisis

Posted by By Chioma Obinna on 2005/09/06 | Views: 262 |

Senate wades into N855m LUTH gratuities crisis


THE Senate Committee on Health is set to wade into the lingering problem of non payment of over N855 million gratuities and pensions owed retired staff of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) by one of the country’s Leading Insurance company, Niger Insurance PLC.

THE Senate Committee on Health is set to wade into the lingering problem of non payment of over N855 million gratuities and pensions owed retired staff of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) by one of the country’s Leading Insurance company, Niger Insurance PLC.

The Chairman Senate Committee on Health, Senator Jalo Zarami who gave the indication yesterday while on a working tour to the hospital said the staggering figure is an issue the committee will not afford to sweep under the carpet.

Senator Zarami who expressed dismay over the long delay by Niger Insurance vowed that the committee would address the issue squarely.

His words, "It is sad to note that the rights of our people that have put in many years of service to the nation are not yet paid. All of us here will one day retire and we will not like to be treated like this. So we are going to address it squarely soonest."

Continuing, Senator Zarami said the delegation was in the hospital to access and address the issue of VAMED projects, hospital equipment, industrial harmony, the level of payments amongst others. He promised that the committee will address all the problems faced by the hospital as a result of old age and put it back in its rightful position in the country.

Briefing the Health Committee delegates earlier, the Chief Medical Director of LUTH Prof. Onatolu Odukoya who appealed to the committee to use their office to ensure that Niger Insurance Plc pays soonest all outstanding pensions and gratuities owed LUTH retired staff.



, explained that the last gratuities paid to retired staff of the hospital was only in March 2002.

Prof. Odukoya noted that gratuities are still owed LUTH pensioners by Niger Insurance PLC from April 2002 to date.

"Similarly, monthly pensions had been paid to retired staff of the hospital only up to November 2003 in which case pensions are still owed to LUTH pensioners by Niger Insurance PLC from December 2003 to date." he asserted.

Breaking down the total sum owed by the insurance company, Prof. Odukoya explained that out of N855, 737,109.18 owed to the institution by Niger Insurance PLC, the underwriter managing the Unified Pension Scheme for LUTH, N502, 464,509.63 was outstanding to date to the hospital as pensions to retired staff, while N353, 272,599.55 was outstanding to the hospital as gratuity to date to retired staff.

According to him, "The effect of non payment of outstanding gratuities and pensions to retired staff of Lagos University Teaching Hospital can best be imagined as their standard of living and health conditions have degenerated to unimaginable status."

Fielding questions from the committee if there was an agreement between the hospital and the insurance company, the CMD said "Niger Insurance is the underwriter appointed by the Federal Ministry of Health, we have no in put in the appointment now and before, everything comes from Federal Ministry of health. The agreement was between the Federal Ministry Health.

On the hospital’s effort to get the money released, Odukoya said, consistently, the hospital management had been talking to them for some time now and we have only succeeded in bringing the Managing Director of the company once in LUTH for a chat, but the insurance company had insisted that the company (Niger Insurance) can only release whatever money the ministry of health sent to them to share to other hospitals


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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.