The Civil and Local Government Staff Association, Ghana (CLOGSAG) is making a case for government to push the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) to cut down its staff, reduce administration cost and realign its investment priorities to address issues of poor returns.
According to the Public Relations Officer of CLOGSAG, Edmund Acquaye, the call is to ensure viability of the company. “SSNIT was to reduce its administrative cost, high staff numbers and poor returns on investments per a recommendation given by a Presidential Commission on Pensions established by former President John Agyekum Kufuor in August 2004, but the Trust did not heed that recommendation,” he told this paper in an interview.
“The Commission recommended that SSNIT, as an institution, should undergo an extensive restructuring that should involve an overhaul of its governance, management and administrative structure. Also, the proposed increase from one to three Deputy Director-Generals ought to be re-examined by the SSNIT management,” he added.
He noted that government, among others, accepted the Commission’s recommendations for a contributory three-tier pension structure, comprising two mandatory schemes and a voluntary scheme.
Another recommendation was for a mandatory basic state social security scheme to be managed by a restructured SSNIT, which would pay periodic monthly and other pension benefits.
According to him, these cost-saving measures that would have enabled SSNIT to effectively and efficiently manage its commitment under the Three-Tier Pension Scheme have still not been initiated.
These comments were also included in CLOGSAG’s May Day message to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. The association believes when these are done, SSNIT will have enough in its coffers and be able remodel pension calculation and pay more to pensioners.
“Workers exhaust themselves during their active days; therefore, when they are going home they should be smiling. But that is not so for many workers; they work for three to four decades and receive peanuts as pension claims every month. Something must be done urgently to deal with this.”