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‘Workers, retirees must be updated on pension’

‘Workers, retirees must be updated on pension’

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Trustfund Pension Fund Administrator has said that  continuous engagement of workers and retires under the new Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) is essential for the overall success of the pension reforms in Nigeria.

The Pension Reform Act 2004 was the institutional basis for pension in both private and public sectors of the country.

Prior to the reform, the Defined Benefits Scheme was overwhelmed with huge pension liabilities from inadequate budgetary provision by government, which did not take into cognisance increases in salary and pension and resulted in delay of pension payments and death benefits of retirees.

Regional manager of Trustfund Pension, Obiora Ozoekwem, speaking at the company’s pre-retirees and retirees forum in Lagos last Thursday, said that the young industry needs regular engagement with retirees to bridge the knowledge gap and increase penetration of the pension scheme in the country.

“This industry is very young, barely 10 years, and modifications are coming out on a daily basis; the only way they can get accurate information and updates is by having this kind of engagement with them so that, one-on-one, they can give us feedback on what they want us to improve on, and we can always update them on new things in the industry,” he said.

According to Ozoekwem, the retirees’ forum was an opportunity to interact with the for,er workers: “When somebody leaves his place of work, information available to the individual becomes minimal, if we cut them off without engaging them regularly, a gap grows.”

Ozoekwem explained that feedbacks ensured improved retirees’ pensions: “Retirees get statement of account through e-mail, and also help TrustFund to educate their clients on the importance of programmed withdrawal over annuity.”

He said the essence of the forum was also to intimate retirees on the various investment portfolios available to them under the programmed withdrawal scheme.

“The essence of the programme is to let them know that same money is not given to everyone, it is based on your contribution and the period you work and remittance from your employers. The second reason is the new investment structure for those still working. Before now, our investment functions were standard; we only allowed certain investment like the money market, equity market, and a few other bonds like FGN and state bonds,” he said.

Under the contributory pension scheme, Ozoekwem said clients are profiled based on their lifespan allowing them to benefit from pension pays with increased income.

“There is a new function in place, so ,you have the right now to say I don’t want my money to be invested in fund one; or I don’t want my money in fund one, please move it to fund two,” he said.

The post ‘Workers, retirees must be updated on pension’ appeared first on The Sun News.

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