‘70 million Nigerians still locked out of micro-pension scheme’
Despite the huge funds expended on the micro pension initiative by the National Pension Commission (PenCom), it could not keep to its assurance of commencing the scheme by the end of 2017.
For this, about 70 million Nigerians in the informal sector remain locked out of the pension scheme, as the new plan does not allow informal sector players to participate in it.
It was in an effort to capture self-employed individuals, especially those with irregular income, usually in the informal sector, who are largely financially uninformed and, with limited or no access to financial services especially pension plan that the idea of micro pension came about.
While the previous administration in PenCom seemed to have done a major work to ensure the micro pension scheme commenced as earlier planned, the exit of its former Director-General, Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, who championed the initiative seems to affected development in this area.
However, with assumption of office of the current Acting Director of the Commission, Aisha Dahiru-Umar, development in micro pension has been lethargic, with little or no action to continue from where the previous administration left it, thereby, casting a cloudy future on the initiative.
Industry sources revealed that the redeployment of the former Head of Micro Pension Department, Polycarp Anyanwu, who nurtured this concept to another department, may have rubbed the Commission of the needed experience in the micro pension department.
As such, it may take some time for the new head of the department to fully integrate this concept before understanding where to start from.
Investigation revealed that staff, who are not knowledgeable on vital operations of the Commission were assigned sensitive responsibilities leading to the slowing down of activities in the Commission.