Only seven out of 37 Nigerian states fully implement contributory pension — PENCOM

Nigerian pensioners used to illustrate the story
Nigerian pensioners used to illustrate the story

Most states across the six geopolitical zones in Nigeria are yet to fully implement the Federal Government’s Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS), a report by the National Pension Commission (PENCOM) has revealed.

According to the report made available to News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday, only six states and the FCT have fully implemented the scheme with regular and up-to-date remittance of pension contributions, the establishment of a pension bureau and enactment of pension law.

The report, signed by PENCOM spokesman, Peter Aghahowa, said the six states as at September 2019 are Kaduna, Anambra, Ekiti, Ondo, Edo and Delta.

In the North-Cenral Zone, only FCT has established a pension bureau and is up-to-date with remittances of pension contributions, while Benue, Kogi and Nasarawa have enacted CPS laws but have no pension bureaus in place.

Although Niger has established a pension bureau, it suspended implementation of the CPS in April 2015 and has since stopped remitting pension contributions. Kwara and Plateau are yet to enact CPS law.

Five states in the North-East zone, comprising Borno, Adamawa, Bauchi, Gombe and Taraba, are yet to commence remitting pension contributions while Yobe is still operating Defined Benefits Scheme.

Also in North-East Zone, only Adamawa, Gombe and Taraba have enacted CPS laws but none has yet established a pension bureau.

In the North-West Zone, only Kaduna had fully implemented CPS with regular and up-to-date remittance of pension contributions, establishment of pension bureau, registration of employees with PFAs and consistent funding of accrued rights with 5 per cent of total monthly bill.

Of all the North-West states, only Katsina neither enacted CPS law nor established pension bureau, while Jigawa and Kebbi which had pension bureaus, were only remitting portions of the pension contributions.

Kano, without a pension board, was deducting pension contributions under the management of the board of trustees and yet to transfer the pension asset to a licensed pension operator.

In the South-East Zone, PENCOM reports that except for Anambra which is fully complying with the implementation of the CPS scheme, others such as Abia, Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo had not keyed into the scheme.

The Commission said that in the South-West zone, Ekiti and Ondo were remitting pension contributions, Ogun and Osun had huge backlogs, Lagos did not provide information on its remittance, while Oyo was yet to commence remittance of pension contributions.

According to PENCOM, all the South West States have, however, enacted CPS laws and established pensions bureaus.

In the South-South, Edo and Delta were up-to-date in their pension contributions, while Rivers and Bayelsa were yet to commence remittance of pension contributions.

In Rivers, contributions made under the repealed law were being refunded to exempted employees, while Akwa Ibom and Cross River did not even have a CPS law in place, PENCOM said.

The PENCOM Spokesman told NAN that the commission did not release the report to undermine or embarrass any state but to intimate employees on the status of their state in terms of their pension contributions.

“With the information provided, workers can hold their states to do the needful in terms of paying their pension up-to-date to guarantee and protect their retirement,” he said.

According to him, the commission will continue to dialogue with the states to do the needful, as the law that established PENCOM does not empowers it to enforce the implementation on the states. (NAN)

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