By Kingsley Okoye
The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) has so far recovered N16 billion of legacy pension funds and assets in the last one year, the Executive Secretary, Mrs Sharon Ikeazor, has said.
Ikeazor made the disclosure at the 2017 stakeholders’ forum of pensioners in Abuja on Friday.
The legacy fund includes the liabilities and assets of pension funds of erstwhile pension offices and treasury funded pensions of parastatal agencies, universities and colleges of education.
She said the legacy funds and assets recovered were mainly from NICON insurance and that efforts were on to recover additional assets and funds held by insurance underwriters.
Ikeazor said the theme of the forum, “Putting Pensioners First, is Putting the Country First“, was designed to brief pensioners on the various activities carried out by PITAD since her assumption of office.
She said her assignment at PTAD had given her opportunity to understand and appreciate the magnitude of problems previously encountered by pensioners .
The secretary said in spite of initial daunting challenges, PTAD had recorded some measure of success in administering the old pension scheme.
Ikeazor listed some of the achievements in the last one year as the automation of the pension payment processes and the use of Government to Person Electronic Payments.
She said the successes had led to pensioners receiving their payments directly through their bank accounts on the 25th of the month.
She said that PTAD had also carried out the digitisation of pensioner’s data and record through creation of clean database and introduction of a client focused service orientation that showed care and empathy.
She said that plans were on to complete the payment of outstanding 33 per cent pension arrears for all sectors.
She said PTAD was strategising on possible ways of developing a social welfare package for verified pensioners once funds were available.
The President, Nigeria Union of Pensioners,(NUP), Mr Abel Afolayan, PTAD had helped in improving the living conditions of pensioners.
Afolyan thanked Ikeazor for her efforts, saying: “Since she came on board, the payment of monthly pension has been regular.’’
Afolayan called on the government to always make funds available to PTAD for the payment of pensioners and in addition, to urgently address the issues of police pensioners.
Some pensioners, including 89-year-old Jegede Joshua, who retired 30 years ago, gave goodwill messages on the occasion. (NAN)