SSNIT losses $11,794,109 following liquidation of 3 investments

The Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) in 2019 recorded losses amounting to $11,794,109 following the liquidation of three of its investments

The three investments, according to the Auditor General’s Report, released in June, this year, had a total cash outlay of $14,768,153.

Officers whose action led to the loss are to be appropriately sanctioned, as recommended by the report while the company had been tasked to investigate the non-performance of the investments to ensure value for money.

Already, the Trust was considering a proposal to write off losses of GH¢26,838,588.87 due to the official liquidation of Bridal Trust, which could only pay GH¢5,490,000.00 out of its accumulated loan of GH¢32,328,588.87.

The report further cited SSNIT’s inability to retrieve an outstanding loan balance of GH¢146,964,641.07 from the Ghana Road Fund by the end of 2019.

“This was partly due to the Trust’s inability to put in place strict measures to ensure that Ghana Road Fund issue a Letter of Authority to the Ghana Commercial Bank and Bank of Ghana, to pledge and place a lien on the Road Fund Accounts, to recover the monthly instalment in line with the loan agreement,” it explained.

Referring to operational challenges, the report noted that, SSNIT was also constrained in collecting from the Ministry of Finance, the divestiture proceeds of $626,522.47 from Divestiture Implementation Committee (DIC) since 2012.

It said the amount was proceeds due SSNIT, after the sales of its 13.60 per cent equity stake in Subri Industrial Plantation Limited (SIPL) to Plantation Socfinaf of Belgium and urged management to step up efforts to recover it.

The Trust, despite the end of the 2020 financial year was yet to receive dividends  in its investments in nine listed and six unlisted companies with a total paid up consideration of GH¢63,174,927.73 and $65,892,842.09 respectively.

The report expressed concern about SSNIT  guaranteeing for Intercity State Transport Company (ISTC) to take a loan of $17,500,000.00 from ADB BANK to procure 100 buses , although it was yet to recover various loans and shareholders advances to the company totalling GH¢49,453,473.45.

Among other recommendations, the report urged SSNIT to ensure that, effective feasibility studies were carried out before investing and collaborate with Ministry of Finance and Ghana Road Fund to ensure full repayment of loans.

“We urged Management to take an effective decision on its investment to avoid further loss. Again, we urged management to investigate the non-performing investments of the 15 companies and ensure value for money was achieved,” it added.

It recommended the development of a funding policy to ensure sustainable management of pension schemes, the Board however, could not ensure the preparation of a funding policy, to enable them to manage effectively and sustain the pension scheme.

BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS

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