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Contributory Pension Scheme Needs Massive Public Awareness

Posted: Aug 6, 2015 at 12:22 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Sola Alabadan,  Lagos


The managing director of Premium Pension Limited, Wilson Ideva, has asserted that the under subscription to the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) in Nigeria was due to lack of adequate public awareness.

Addressing journalists at the company’s corporate headquarters in Abuja recently, Ideva said : “A vast majority of Nigerians including the supposedly enlightened community lack information on the workings and belief in the workability of the contributory Pension Scheme”.

“How else can one explain the less than 10 percent penetration of the market more than 10 years after the commencement of the scheme?” he asked.

Less than seven million workers have subscribed to the new pension scheme out of the estimated more than 70 million working population of the country while a total of N4.9 trillion has been amassed as pension Assets under Management in the industry.

“The lukewarm attitude of some Nigerians to the new pension scheme is inexplicable considering the ugly past of the defined benefit scheme which we have all been striving to break away from,” he stated.

Ideva maintained that: “Workers looked up to retirement with so much fear and trepidation because of the inherent uncertainties. The old scheme was fraught with corruption and bureaucratic bottlenecks that occasioned the ugly sight of long queues of aged citizens waiting to be paid pension that oftentimes never came.”

Describing the CPS as a huge success and the most impactful government initiative in recent times, he noted that “The scheme has already begun to improve the lives of retirees in the country. It is also inching towards becoming a critical contributor to national development.”

Ideva said that there was need to applaud the initiators of the scheme in the country. “Initially, when the idea was presented, a lot of people did not believe in it,” he noted. “This is understandable considering where we were coming from.”

He noted that such skepticism has been dissipated with the successes recorded by the new pension scheme since its more than 10 years of existence.

He recalled the pathetic situation of pensioners before the scheme was introduced and juxtaposed it with the current situation where workers are partners in the management of their pension funds.

He urged people to note the difference between the new Contributory Pension Scheme and the old defined benefit system under which some pensioners are still being managed.