“A fiction remains a fiction”- PenCom react to claims of financial impropriety

pencom dg

The National Pension Commission, PenCom, has described as “outrageous falsehood,” allegations of financial impropriety against the commission and its Director General, DG, Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar.

PenCom in a statement issued during the weekend, frowned at a report containing documents that allege the DG received millions of dollars in estacode for foreign trips even during the Covid-19 lockdown.

The documents provided evidence of reception of funds through a certain bank account by the DG amongst other things.

But the commission in a statement, has termed the report a “renewed falsehood and campaign of calumny against the Commission and its Director General while describing it as an “unfounded and fabricated report.”

PenCom says it believes that some “mischievous people” seeking political appointments were responsible for the report, urging them to employ more decent ways of looking for favours next time.

In its statement, the commission said, “we believe there are more decent ways of going about it than peddling tales by moonlight and using notorious online outlets to push the lies to unsuspecting readers.”

“Management would like to alert the public to the renewed campaign of outrageous falsehood against the National Pension Commission, PenCom, and its Director General, Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar, over some imagined financial impropriety. Although the promoters of this fiction went to the extent of manufacturing documents and listing non-existent bank accounts to make the fabrication look real, a fiction remains a fiction and can never become the truth no matter how many times it is repeated and recycled.

“It was alleged that the Director General was paid millions of dollars as estacodes for foreign trips she did not embark upon in 2020. This poor attempt at calumny is exposed by the fact that there was a global lockdown in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic during which international travels were restricted. Offices were shut down and most people had to hold virtual meetings. It is, thus, most outlandish to suggest that any government agency would claim to be paying allowances to its officials for international travels when most airports were shut down globally.

“More so, official foreign trips require strict documentation, including air tickets, stamped passport pages and evidence of number of days spent. Rates for estacodes are standardised. If the DG were to spend two years abroad without returning to the country for one day, it would still be impossible for her to claim a million dollars as estacode. The desperate fabricators need to respect the intelligence of Nigerians.

“We are aware of current political intrigues in the country caused by the jostling for appointments, but we believe there are more decent ways of going about it than peddling tales by moonlight and using notorious online outlets to push the lies to unsuspecting readers. The public is implored to ignore these fake documents and the discredited allegations being recycled at the slightest opportunity. The Commission has nothing to hide and will continue to run a transparent and accountable system.”

Established by the Pension Reform Act 2004, the National Pension Commission (PenCom) is responsible for regulating, supervising and ensuring the effective administration of pension matters in Nigeria.

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