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Retirees sue bank over alleged N75.7bn unremitted pensions

Some retired employees of Union Bank Plc have filed a class action against the bank before the National Industrial Court over alleged unremitted pensions, which they estimate at N76.7bn.

Two retirees, Sanyaolu Sulaimon and Mkpa Jacob, filed the suit on behalf of themselves and 900 others of their colleagues.

In the suit filed on their behalf by their lawyer, Mr Monday Ubani, the retirees are urging the court to order Union Bank to remit the N76.7bn with an interest of N13.7bn.

They are also seeking a separate N2bn payment as general damages for “delayed remittances and transfers, malicious intentions, illegal and unlawful withholding of pension funds.”

The retirees claimed that the bank failed to transfer the actual amount in their Legacy Pension Fund to their respective retirement savings accounts being managed by their chosen pension fund administrators.

They are urging the court to declare that the bank breached the provisions of the Pension Reforms Act, 2004 and 2014 by failing to transfer the legacy pension funds to the respective pension funds administrators.

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They told the court that the problem started after PenCom refused to give approval for Union Bank’s in-house pension scheme – Union Pension Scheme – and directed the bank to scrap it.

They said following this, Union Bank discontinued its in-house pension scheme while the claimants were allowed to choose their individual pension funds administrators to which their future contributions would be transferred.

Sulaimon and Jacob alleged that after their actuarial valuation was computed by H.R Nigeria Ltd in 2008, Union Bank only transferred the fixed assets of the legacy funds to their respective chosen pension funds administrators – Premium Pensions and AIICO Pensions.

They said the bank withheld the liquid assets of the legacy pension.

The court has yet to fix a hearing date for the suit.

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