The Social Security and National Insurance Trust, SSNIT has deleted names of 6,452 ‘ghost’ pensioners from its payroll, saving the entity more than GH¢20 million from February to September 2018.
“The pension payroll has been trimmed by about GH¢2.7 million per month, and this benefit accrues monthly to the Trust,” the Director-General of the SSNIT, Dr John Ofori-Tenkorang, disclosed at a media encounter in Accra last Thursday.
He said the amount that had been saved so far had been put in a special account at the Bank of Ghana (BoG).
Dr Ofori-Tenkorang said the SSNIT paid GH¢2.2 billion to 189,549 pensioners and other beneficiaries in 2017 as compared to GH¢1.7 billion payment to 174,164 pensioners and other beneficiaries in 2016, representing an increase of 29.41 per cent.
He said pension payments had been increased by 10 percent in 2018, adding that the minimum pension was above the statutory monthly minimum wage for workers.
Dr Ofori-Tenkorang said 209,551 new members had been enrolled onto the scheme this year, representing an increase of 14 per cent over the previous year. He said whereas the SSNIT had about 66,000 establishments on its payroll, the Registrar General’s Department had more than 250,000 registered establishments, meaning there was more room for improvement in the enrolment of new members onto the scheme.
To that end, he said “the Trust has, therefore, initiated collaborations with the Registrar General’s Department and the Ghana Revenue Authority to connect to their databases to get on board all active registered establishments.”
Speaking on investments, Dr Ofori-Tenkorang said the Trust’s investment portfolio improved tremendously in 2017 compared to previous years.
For instance, he explained that the total investment assets of the Trust as of September 2018 was GH¢9.38 billion, representing a growth of 2.4 per cent in asset value, compared to the September 2017 value of GH¢9.16 billion, and an increase in 1.4 per cent compared to the December 2017 value of GH¢9.25 billion.
According to Dr Ofori-Tenkorang, there would be no investment in the real estate in the short and medium term until the SSNIT’s investment portfolio had been rebalanced.
He said SSNIT was liaising with the informal sector to address the peculiar needs of low-income earners.
He said the future looked bright for the SSNIT in that the entity had for the first time in many years received dividends of GH¢1 million and GH¢500,000 from the Labadi Hotel and Trust Hospitals respectively.