About 39, 855 private sector establishments have failed to enroll their employees onto the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), the Director of Regulations at the National Pension Regulatory Authority (NPRA), Mr Ernest Amartey Vendee, has revealed.
He said data from SSNIT indicated that there were 91,321 private sector establishments out of which 51,466 were active under the SSNIT Scheme and the remaining institutions had failed to pay Tier 2 of their workers contributions.
Mr Vendee made these revelations at a labour forum on the theme: “Implementation of the National Pensions Act (766): challenges and prospects” in Accra, on Thursday.
The forum, organised by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) and the Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung (FES) was meant to educate the unions on how their funds were being managed and other issues related to pensions.
Mr Vendee said the Authority was in the process of assigning some institutions to private insurances companies to enable them pay their workers contributions, saying those who failed to comply with the directive would face legal action.
He said the sanctions would include terms of imprisonment and monetary fines noting that despite NPRA’s rigorous education and sensitization, especially through stakeholders engagement, most institutions failed to pay their workers’, contributions.
Mr Vandee said the authority in partnership with SNNIT and the security agencies would arrest and sanctions private institutions that would fail to pay their workers contributions.
However, he said the NPRA was in the process of unifying all pensions schemes as mandated under the National Pension Act,2008(Act 537).
Mr. Vandee explained that all the various pension schemes such as the Judicial Service Pension Scheme, the Police Pension Scheme, the Education Pension would be placed under one scheme.
He said though, the authority was faced with challenges in unifying the various schemes, the process had far advanced to enforce such a provision .
“For instance, a drafting instrument is expected to be sent to the Attorney General’s Department shortly by the NPRA, to enable the department to come up with a Legislative Instrument to make enforcement possible,” Mr. Vandee said.
The Resident Director of FES, Mr. Fritz Kopsieker urged stakeholders to take issues relating to pension seriously, and called for an urgent enforcement of the Pension Act to ensure that the scheme becomes transparent and successful.
By Bernard Benghan & Benedicta Folley