GOVERNMENT should improve the welfare of retirees in Zambia as most of them are experiencing challenges, says Public Service Retirees and Pensioners Association of Zambia (PSRPAZ) general secretary Peter Lumbala.
Mr Lumbala said most retirees were facing challenges due to lack of empowerment by Government.
“Most retirees are not doing well because the manner in which they were removed from office was abrupt; Government has neglected the people that had served the country, instead of giving them something that would make them live a better life, they have been left on their own.
‘‘ That is the reason why most of them who were retired between 1999 to 2007 are literally limping,” Mr. Lumbala said.
He said there was need for Government to consider improving the welfare of public service retirees.
Mr Lumbala said a large percentage of what retirees owed was deducted due to some loans they acquired.
He said most retirees went with very little pension at the end of their service even after having been in public service for many years.
“Retirees never had the finance power to start a new life, they were given their dues alright but the dues were not enough. When you are in the service, the salary cannot really support you, you need to get certain loans for you to acquire certain things and when they were leaving, there were no consideration by the Government but to chop off the loans that they owed,” he said.
Mr Lumbala also called on Government to revise the public service retirees’ monthly allowances.
He said with current high cost of living, retirees and pensioners were failing to sustain themselves due to low monthly allowances.
“The annuities up to now are still very low, the highest is getting up to K200 through the pensions fund. The money is too little, how can one budget on K200?” he asked.