Some Gambian pensioners have been ‘turned down’ in the past days, when they approached the Treasury Unit for their pensionable allowances pay.
Some of them were told that their names did not appear on the registrar, hence some verification needed to be done. And, are told to return in September 2017.
One of those deferred to September is Alasana Jassey a former Care Taker at Albion Primary School who is in his 70s.
Mr. Jassey travelled from his retirement residence in Foni District, about 50 miles away from the capital city Banjul, but did not receive his D 350 monthly pensionable allowance.
When asked to explain the reasons behind the ‘turn-down’, Lamin Singateh Deputy Accountant General, of the Treasury Unit said ‘it’s a routine exercise’ that is normally conducted every four years, which is meant to flush out ‘ghost’ pensioners’ from the payroll system.
According to Singhateh, it was announced in September 2016 for all pensioners to show-up in person and fill a verification form. The completed forms will ascertain whether a particular pensioner is living or not.
“Those affected are probably the pensioners that do not fill the form.
“An opportunity is given to them, to do so and probably may get their allowances in September 2017.
“The exercise is effective and useful in making sure that only living pensioners are paid.”
He went on to explain that the exercises for the pensioners are conducted by the Treasury Unit and that of the active civil servants are done by the Personnel Management Office (PMO).
He said the PMO had also finalised an exercise with respect to the active civil servants and the outcome was positive.
Gambian civil servants can retire at the age of 60 and are entitled to state pensionable allowance that ranges from D 350 to D 10,000 Dalasis monthly or more, depending on the end grade and length of service.