The Head of the Civil Service of the Federation called for productivity among workers in Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs), handling matters related to pension to be more proactive in their service delivery to minimise forestall the challenges and issues arising from retirement.
Mrs. Winifred Ekanem Oyo-Ita made the charge at the Executive Intelligence Management Course organized by the Department Of State Security (DSS) Services Institute for Security Studies on Monday, 15th July, 2019 in Abuja.
According to her, for Nigerian workers who are especially challenged by low levels of income and savings as well as huge family and social responsibilities, retirement planning is often complicated.
The Head of Service stated that “Pensions as a form of social security against old-age poverty and other uncertainties have attracted great interest virtually everywhere in the world, both in developed and developing countries, in recent times. Pension programmes, especially those that are publicly financed and administered, have become an issue of concern to economists, policy makers and the general public. This is not only because such programmes are central to the well-being of pensioners and the elderly, but also because the majority of pension programmes are not actually balanced (that is they are not financially stable), and as such they are running at deficits, thus making the present values of their future liabilities to be enormous. To this end, an overview of what a pension programme/scheme entails is needed for a general under-standing of this form of social security service”.
Mrs. Winifred disclosed that average life expectancy of Nigerians hovers somewhere between early 50s, a large number of Nigerians live up to their 80s and 90s. With many more people living up to those ages, and the growing sophistication amongst our young adults adequate provisions have to be made in our social system for the care of the aged. Where such systems are not in place, workers have to plan ahead for their old age.
The Head of Service noted that under the new Contributory Pension Scheme, retirement planning has take a new and more promising dimension. Firstly, the new scheme is compulsory for Nigerian workers in the private and Federal Public Sector, and is already being embraced by many State Governments towards, ensuring that workers receive their benefits as at when due, and setting up a uniform administration and regulation of retirement benefits in Nigeria.
Mrs. Oyo-Ita further said that, “due to its funded contributory nature, and the fact that it is privately managed and well regulated it is a marked departure from previous schemes in the private and public sector. The individualism that anchors the scheme, as well as the portability of the individual Retirement Savings Account (“RSA”), gives both social and economic benefits to the worker and society at large”.
KAUTHAR HASSAN IBRAHIM GWARZO
FOR: D (COMMUNICATIONS)