About 90 percent of Nigerians aged 60 years and above live either with irregular pension or without pension support.
In Nigeria, all citizens over the age of 60 years are classified as elderly and due for retirement in both the public and private sectors with few exceptions.
The National Population Commission (NPC) estimated that in 2015, the estimated elderly population in Nigeria was 9,319,025 and in 2016 and 2017 it increased to 9,622,057 and 9,934,942 respectively. The NPC revealed that the percentage of female elderly stood at 44.21 percent for the years under review.
Going by the number of persons aged 60 years and above who receive pension benefits from both the private sector and the federal government, about 90 percent of the elderly in Nigeria are either not receiving monthly pension or are on the pension payroll of state governments characterised with payment irregularity.
Data compiled from the National Pension Commission (PenCom) and the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) show that only 978,200 retirees from the private sector and the federal government receive monthly pension under the contributory pension scheme (CPS) or the defined benefits scheme (DBS).
Data from PTAD show that as at March this year, there were 244,945 pensioners on the federal government’s pension payroll under the DBS while data from PenCom show that as at March this year, there were 733,255 elderly persons with retirement savings accounts (RSAs) under the CPS.
Analysis shows that 471,498 elderly RSA holders were from the public sector while 261,757 were from the private sector. It is unclear the number of elderly persons covered under the pension arrangements of subnational governments in Nigeria, but in many states pensions are meagre and payment irregular.