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SCORES of pensioners are frustrated and angry at the seeming delay of the payment of their pension. The pensioners who opted to be placed under the new pension act, National Pensions Act, 2008, Act 766 or the Three Tier Pension Scheme, cannot understand why the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) has refused to pay their pension despite processing their forms since January 2011.

Per the new pension scheme, SSNIT is supposed to pay 13.5 percent of pensioners their retirement fund while the National Pension Regulatory Authority (NPRA) takes care of the remaining five percent. The NPRA just began a year ago. CITY & BUSINESS GUIDE gathers that a letter has been issued by the committee set up to oversee the challenges confronting the payment of the pension to SSNIT to begin paying the 13.5 percent retirement fund.

The paper also learnt that the NPRA was computing the 5.0 percent which is only about a year’s contribution by the beneficiaries so as to pay the pensioners. Numerous pensioners, according to information gathered, have been trooping into the offices of both SSNIT and NPRA demanding their pension benefit. Dr. Adomako, who is one of such pensioners but currently on contract with the KNUST, told this paper that he did not understand why he had not received his pension though he processed his form April this year. He added that “How could I take care of myself if I did not have a contract job with KNUST? I am blessed but lots of pensioners are suffering.”

He therefore urged the government to step in to save the situation and prevent some pensioners from dying prematurely. Aziz Zakaria blamed officials of SSNIT especially for causing the delay of their pensions. Meanwhile, this paper gathers that SSNIT will begin paying the pensioners under the new three-tier scheme from next week. The three-tier pension scheme began in January 2010 as commencement date for the deductions of the new contribution rates started on January 1, 2010.

The new act provides for pension reforms in the country through the introduction of a contributory three-tier pension scheme, the establishment of a National Pensions Regulatory Authority to oversee the administration and management of registered pension schemes and trustees of registered schemes. It also includes the re-establishment of a Social Security and National Insurance Trust to provide for related matters.

The scheme consists of a first tier: a mandatory basic national Social Security Scheme, a second tier: a mandatory fully-funded and privately-managed occupational pension scheme and a third tier: a voluntary fully-funded and privately-managed provident fund and personal pension scheme.
Source: Daily Guide

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