GAF, Police Pension Schemes Conflict With National Pension Scheme -Haruna

The Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Haruna Idrrisu, says pension legislation of the security agencies in Ghana are not in conformity with the National Pension Act 766.

He said past credit and unification in the pension regulations of the Ghana Police Service, Ghana Armed Forces, Ghana Prisons Service and other security agencies do not synchronise with the national pension act.

According to him, there is a clear lack of understanding, which he termed as conflict of the law, stressing that the security agencies exist under their own pension rules and regulations, while there is a National Pension Act 766.

He asserted: “We need a reconciliation of the legislation to ensure that there is a unification of the implementation of those pension results”.

The Employment and Labour Relations Minister, who was speaking at the opening ceremony of National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA) Zonal Office at Asokwa in Kumasi, recently announced that Government had given policy approval for NPRA to be weaned from Government’s subventions and be autonomous.

He jokingly told NPRA that they are no longer going to be a spoilt toddler that is still asking for breast milk and urged NPRA to learn to find food on their own and be on their own.

Touching on the second tier pensions saga, which ensued a protracted tussle between Trade Union Congress TUC and Government: he stated: “the Government’s motive was simple to guarantee pension income security for retiring workers, having had a fulfilling working life,

the best Government can do is to assure workers of happy time in their retirement.

“Your income security will not be jeopardized on the merit of improper or inappropriate of investment”, Mr. Haruna stressed.

He underscored that President John Dramani’s administration and government will at all times, hold through to guarantee pension income security for all Ghanaians.

Asokwahene helps the Labour Minister to cut the tape to commission the office

On the use of NPRA funds, he directed NPRA to issue new policy investment guidelines that will guide the use of pension resources as they open up the second year pension regime. He expressed satisfaction about NPRA’s action of transferring all funds including outstanding once, which has been held in the temporary pension fund account of the Bank of Ghana, which he said has denied some better investment opportunities the money could have been utilized for.

The labour minister said the NDC government was honoring a pledge which was made by President Mahama in the State of the Nation address that NPRA must show its presence in the Regional Capitals in particular, to strengthen pension regulations.

According to him, interchanging NPRA for SNNIT is a clear lack of understanding which casts across many minds. SNNIT is subject to the regulatory mandate and control of the NPRA

He commended the board and management of NPRA for showing presence outside of the Region. “I can only look forward to the opening of the northern zone and that of the western Region in the first half or worst still the second part of the year 2016. He urged pensioners not to hesitate to report any act of omission, commission or any conduct relative to their pension to the NPRA.

Touching on the appointments in state owned companies, the Tamale South MP warned that no Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in Government institutions should be in an acting position for more than six months or at worst one year. He stressed it is not an acceptable practice with well-known and established practices within the public services across Ghana.

The Minister, therefore, said all Boards in state institutions must ensure that within six months, they revert to the appointing authority, who is the President of Ghana, with their recommendations either supporting or denying the appointment accordingly. “ It is the best way Ghanaians can see President John Dramani Mahama exercising his lawful mandate and authority as the appointing authority, within the meaning of Article 70 and 195 of the 1992 Republican constitution”, he noted.

According to him, he expects all boards, councils, commission, which has a dual role to support the President in this endeavour, not to keep them in the pitch and in the touchline for too long, in the role of acting Chief Executive or Managing Director.

personnel of Ghana Police Service

Dr. Nii Kpakpo Sowah, chairing the function, said the opening of Kumasi NPRA office after that of Greater Accra is quite significant. He assured the public, employers, workers to educate the masses more about the opportunities associated with NPRA, which he said can be done campaign intensification.

He revealed that 2,056 scheme under the second tier scheme enrolment will be carried out in outreach programs, institutions, radio and television.

Dr. Kpakpo told the function that, as at December 3, 2015, NPRA had transferred equivalent amount of GHc193, 000,000 from the popular pension account to the accounts of NPRA and that they will keep transferring the rest of the funds from the Bank of Ghana to NPRA.

He urged NPRA workers to stay committed to their duty and thanked Otumfuo Osei Tutu II for helping NPRA get a zonal office

From Richard Owusu-Akyaw, Kumasi

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