Military pension board chair clarifies voluntary retirement among personnel

Commodore Sabiru Lawal, the Chairman of Military Pension Board, has refuted the news making the round that military personnel are quitting in droves following misinterpretation of voluntary retirement in the service by the public.

He debunked this on Thursday in Abuja during interaction with newsmen to clarify his statement during his Oct. 4, budget defence before the House of Representatives Committee on Defence and Security.

He said what was reported in the media made it look as if there was massive voluntary retirement in the military adding that his statement was grossly misunderstood.

He said, “In the military we have categories of retirees, we have those who retire on medical ground, we have those that retire compulsorily and we have voluntary retirees.’’

He stated that those who retired voluntarily were for those who served the mandatory 35 years and then retired.

According to him, unlike other organisations where you just coined them as retirees, in the military, once you put in your 35 years as constitution demands, you retire voluntarily; so we call it voluntary retirement.

He, however, said that the way it was put in the media was that the whole military are retiring massively thereby leaving the military.

“No, that is far from the truth, I was quoted out of context, voluntary retirement are for people that are alive but have completed their service years.

“So, what you see in their record is voluntary retirement. So, presently we are having many of them attaining that 35 years of service,” he said.

He said that the confusion was a fall-out of a move to justify the increase in military pension budgetary allocation.

He said that the military pension board was saddled with the responsibilities of paying military pensions and death benefits.

He, however, said that the committee was informed that the military was currently having increase in the number of voluntary retirees.(NAN)