The Federal Government owes 105,920 retirees about N705 billion, the National Pension Commission (PenCom), has said.
It urged the National Assembly to intervene by appropriating the needed fund to enable the government to meet up its obligations to its former employees.
In a memorandum submitted by the Director-General, National Pension Commission (PenCom), Ms Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, to the National Assembly Joint Committee on Appropriations, the organisation said the Federal Government owes its 2016 retirees N73.1 billion while N113 billion is required for the 2017 retirees.
“It also owes pension increase of 79,961 pensioners who retired under the CPS from 2004 to 2014 the sum of N79.2 billion, the sum of N10 billion being the Federal Government’s statutory contribution to the funding of the Pension Protection Fund and the sum of N440 billion being the shortfall in the retirement benefits of 24 retired Heads of Civil Service of the Federation, Federal Permanent Secretaries and 16 Federal Permanent Secretaries.”
According to the DG, the most critical challenge of the implementation of the CPS in Nigeria today is the non-payment of retirement benefits of Federal Government employees who retired in 2016 due to insufficient appropriation and late release of appropriated funds for payment of accrued pension rights.
She made a case on the need for adequate appropriation of funds for the payment of the Federal Government’s pension liability under the Scheme.
She also sought appropriation for overhead and capital subvention to facilitate the Commission’s operations in 2017.
She urged the Joint Committee on Appropriation to consider, approve and release of the sum of N73 billion to pay January to December 2016 retirees of the Federal Government;
She also sought the appropriation of N113 billion for 2017 retirees of the Federal Government, as determined by PenCom pursuant to Section 39(3) of the Pension Reform Act (PRA).
Giving a summary of Federal Government pension liability for the year 2017, she stated that N72 billion is needed for 16,267 civil servants are expected to mandatorily retire in 2017 inclusive of 1,569 Civil Servants who retired before 2017 but had not been provided for previously.
She also said that N19.1 billion is needed for 9,652 estimated death claims and N21.1 billion for an estimate of employees yet to be enrolled by the Commission
She said: “Also, our prayers to the National Assembly is to ensure adequate appropriation under the Federal Government’s Recurrent Expenditure in order to facilitate the implementation of the new 18 percent pension contributions rate; to ensure the appropriation of the sum of N79.2 billion for payment of pension increase for the 79,961 pensioners who retired under the CPS from 2004 to 2014 and ensure the appropriation of the sum of N10 billion being the Federal Government’s statutory contribution to the funding of the Pension Protection Fund.
“We also pray that the National Assembly should ensure the appropriation of the sum of N440 billion being the shortfall in the retirement benefits of 24 retired Heads of Civil Service of the Federation and Federal Permanent Secretaries that had earlier enrolled with the Commission and 16 Federal Permanent Secretaries scheduled to retire in 2017; and ensure the appropriation of the total sum of N5 billion as Overhead and Capital subvention to facilitate the Commission’s activities in 2017.”