It was indescribable excitement when some of the former staff of the defunct national airline, Nigeria Airways Limited (NAL) began to receive payment alerts, barely few days after the completion of their verification and data processes.
This was confirmed by the President, Aviation Union Grand Alliance (AUGA), Lookman Animashaun who commended President Muhammadu Buhari for ensuring that the staff of the former national airline were paid as promised.
Animashaun, also commended the Minister of State, Aviation, Hadi Sirika for fulfilling the promise he made to the ex-workers of the former national airline.
Investigations revealed that the few ones that had received payment alerts were those verified and captured last Monday, by officials of the Ministry of Finance, President Initiative on Continuous Audit (PICA) Department, while the majority of the staffers who were cleared late last week, were yet to receive alerts.
Animashaun, in an interview at the centre located at the Lagos airport, explained that apart from the hiccups on the first day of the exercise, it had been going on smoothly.
On the average, he said 800 retirees were attended to nationwide daily and believed that with the achievements so far recorded, the exercise would be rounded up by today.
The exercise was originally scheduled to end on Monday, October 22, 2018, but because of the rigours of the verification and data processes, the closing date was shifted.
Animashaun, maintained that 5,968 retirees were beneficiaries of the exercise and assured that anyone captured and cleared by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) would be paid the sums due him.
“After the first day hiccups, everything has progressed and the number of people that are trooping in will definitely have an effect on the whole exercise, but then, for the past two days, you can see that all the gates are opened and people are coming in. By tomorrow (today), we should be able to round up, but they will be here till Friday.
“5,968 people were divided into six days nationwide; Lagos, Kano and Enugu. The same list you have here; you have in any other centres. So, anywhere you find yourself that is closer to you or more convenience, you are expected to go there, but the issue is that most people prefer to come to Lagos for the reason best known to them.
“I have seen someone coming from Sokoto to Lagos, rather than Kano and some also come from the East and were expected to go to Enugu. All these people add to the crowd we have here.
“I don’t have the exact number of people being attended to in Lagos, but on a daily basis till Sunday, we have been attending to an average of 800 retirees, but from Monday, it has reduced to about 300. Today (Wednesday), I don’t think it has been up to 50 people,” he said.