Subject Pension Funds To Forensic Audit—Franklin Cudjoe

Government has been urged to subject the management of the Temporary Pension Fund Account (TPFA) by the National Pension Regulatory Authority (NPRA) to a forensic audit as part of efforts to solve the current impasse with organised labour.

The suggestion was made in a paper written by Kwamena Essilfie Adjaye, Theo Acheampong and Franklin Cudjoe all of the Ghana Growth and Development Platform (GGDP).

The paper also suggested that the spirit of the SSNIT Act appears to empower the contributors to choose who manages their funds. They also questioned the government’s insistence on Pension Alliance Trust (PAT) as the sole trustee for the worker’s funds and the keeping of the second-tier funds by the government in the TPFA all this while.

The full recommendations made in the paper are as follows:

The GGDP proposes the following towards resolution of the impasse:

a. The NPRA should immediately, without delay, be asked to produce an Investment report showing how much funds have been received, what it has been invested in, and what the return on investment over the period has been.

b. The stewardship of the NPRA over the TPFA and the investment activities of the NPRA with respect to same should be subjected to immediate forensic audit.

c. The NPRA should be ordered to announce a cut-off date for taking Tier 2 contributions into the TPFA by employers so that unified and proper accounting can be undertaken.

d. The NPRA should immediately publicize the list of trustees it has registered so far, and it should henceforth periodically update the populace on how these trustees are meeting the legal and regulatory provisions of the Act.

e. Trustees approved and registered by the NPRA should make presentations jointly to the Government (employer) and the Labour Unions (employees). Then the prospective trustees should be made to tender competitively.

f. Then the employees should choose the trustee, as this is our interpretation of the Act.

g. Thereafter, employers should be informed to make their mandatory Tier 2 (and voluntary Tier 3) contributions into schemes chosen by employees.

The paper also included recommendations to reduce the administrative costs of SSNIT from 18.5% of contributions to between 5 and 10 percent.

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