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Military begins payment of ex-servicemen allowance

The Military Pensions Board said it has commenced the payment of the owed Security Debarment Allowance to eligible military retirees or Next of Kin of deceased military personnel.

A Security Debarment Allowance is the money paid to retired military personnel to discourage them from using the skills they acquired while in service against the government.

Over 90,000 military retirees who retired before 2017 were originally not among those to benefit from the allowance.

The reason for their exclusion according to the Minister of Defence, Major-General Bashir Magashi (retd), was that personnel who retired before the law was signed were not entitled to the allowance.

The affected retired military personnel have embarked on a series of protests in the last two years to demand the payment of their allowance.

However, the president, Major General Muhammadu (retd ), last year, during the inauguration of the 2023 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Emblem and Appeal Fund said he had approved N134.7bn for the payment of the allowance to all military veterans.

In a statement on Thursday by the Chairman, Military Pensions Board, Rear Admiral Saburi Lawal, said the board has commenced the payment after an agreement had been reached with the retirees.

The statement read, ” Sequel to the approval given by the President for the payment of the Security Debarment Allowance to military retirees who originally were not covered by the  November 9, 2017, effective date and the agreement reached at the ensuing tripartite meetings of the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Finance and representatives of the Veteran Associations.

“The Military Pensions Board wishes to inform our esteemed military retirees and the general public that the Board has commenced payment of the first and second tranches (that is, for 1st and 2nd Quarters 2023) of the SDA to eligible military retirees/Next of Kins of deceased military personnel.

“The payment, which is in fulfilment of the Presidential approval of the provisions of the reviewed Manual of Financial Administration 2017 will commence on Thursday 5 January 2023. “

Lawal retirees who are on their database and retired before November 9, 2017, would be paid.

The statement added, “The beneficiaries of these payments are:  military retirees on the MPB database who retired before 9 November 2017, deceased military retirees who were alive when the MAFA was signed on 9 November 2017, and non-pensionable retirees who retired before 9 November 2017 but were only paid gratuities.

‘However, our esteemed retirees are please requested to note that the SDA is calculated as a function of 10% of the retiree’s annual basic salary at the time of retirement multiplied by the number of years served in the services. ‘”

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