Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar
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Chuks Udo Okonta
15 States in the federation have commenced implementation of key provisions of the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS), the National Pension Commission (PenCom) has said.
The pension regulator noted that 24 states have enacted laws and domesticated the Pension Reforms Act(PRA) 2014 into their respective state laws.
The Acting Director-General, PenCom, Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar,
disclosed this today at the 3rd Quarter, 2018 Consultative Forum for States organised by the Commission in Lagos.
She noted that the 15 states have established their respective Pension Bureaux, Commissions or Boards; Conduct Actuarial Valuation; Commence remittance of pension contributions; Funding accrued rights of the employees; and putting in place a Group Life Insurance Policy for the employees.
Dahir-Umar, who was represented by the Head, States Operations Department, PenCom, Dr. Dan Ndackson, added that three states have enacted laws on CPS, six others are at various stages of adopting the Contributory Pension Scheme, two States are at bill stage of a Law that is neither CPS nor Contributory Defined Benefits Scheme, while one has continued with the Defined Benefit Scheme(DBS).
While hoping that all States would eventually adopt the scheme in the nearest future, she said, the new pension scheme has immense benefits for Retirement Savings Account(RSAs) in both public and private sectors of the economy.
Head of Service, Lagos State, Mrs. Folasade Adesoye, said, 14 years after the commencement of the new Pension Scheme, its ideals of providing pension benefits to retirees as and when due, has not been defeated.
She stressed that the modest achievement of the scheme in Lagos state was a result of commitment of the state government towards the pension welfare of its workers and retirees as budgetary allocations were made promptly to meet pension demands of its workforce as well as the state’s pensioners.
Stating that there are areas in the PRA 2014 yet to be implemented, she said the issue of transfer window that will allow an employee to change from one Pension Fund Administrator(PFA) to another has remained outstanding since 2005 while the issues of Guaranteed Minimum Pension(GMP) and Pension Protection Fund(PPF) in the PRA 2014 are yet to be released.
“These matters, in our opinion, are matters that bothers on the welfare of retirees in old age and should guarantee comfort while out of office. There is the need for urgency on these outstanding issues and stakeholders must work towards comprehensive guidelines aimed at ensuring the full implementation of the content of the law,” she suggested.
Most states of the federation were represented, at the two-day seminar, by officers in charge of pension in respective states.