Lagos pays N21.375bn to 3,884 retirees
The administration of Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) of Lagos State, has so far in the history of the Contributory Pension Scheme, paid a total accrued right of N21, 375,333,764.77k (Twenty-One Billion, Three Hundred and Seventy-Five Million, Three Hundred and Thirty-Three Thousand, Seven Hundred and Sixty-Four Naira, Seventy-Seven Kobo) only, into the Retirement Savings Accounts (RSA) of 3,884.
This was disclosed today, by the Director-General, Lagos State Pension Commission, Mr. Rotimi Adekunle Hussain, during the presentation of Retirement Bond Certificates to the second tranche of the ninth batch of 580 employees who recently retired from the State Public Service.
Mr. Hussain who said that the State Government has been steadfast in its commitment at sustaining full implementation of Contributory Pension Scheme even beyond the present administration, added that Solid and well defined structures have been put in place to ensure that the statutory 5% contribution that goes into the Redemption Fund Account created for the purposes of redeeming the Retirement Bonds which shows the accrued pension rights for years spent in service prior to the commencement of the Contributory Pension Scheme is sustained.
He recalled that before now, the Government had paid total accrued rights of N18, 974,294,919.55k (Eighteen Billion, Nine Hundred and Seventy-Four Million, Two Hundred and Ninety-Four Thousand, Nine Hundred and Nineteen Naira, Fifty-Five Kobo) only, into the Retirement Savings Accounts of 3,489 retirees which include
the first tranche of the ninth batch numbering 185 retirees who were earlier paid the sum of N943,145,989.49k in September of this year.
According to the Director-General, the second tranche of 395 retirees in the ninth batch are being presented with their Retirement Bond Certificates of a total accrued rights of N2,401,038,845.22k (Two Billion, Four Hundred and One Million, Thirty-Eight Thousand, Eight Hundred and Forty-Five Naira, Twenty-Two Kobo) only, at the ceremony today.
He attributed the achievement so far made by the State Government in the implementation of the Contributory Pension Scheme, to the sincere commitment and maximum support of the present administration in the State which ensures that funds are made available for monthly remittances as well as the commitment of the Board, Management and members of Staff of the Commission who worked relentlessly towards its success.
Mr. Hussain used the forum to clarify the issues about the actual number of Lagos State employees that are registered under the Contributory Pension Scheme. He said, “I wish to put it on record at this forum, that the number of Lagos State employees under the CPS is 135,000 (One Hundred and Thirty-Five Thousand). This number includes employees in the core Civil Service, Tertiary Institutions, Local Government Staff, Teaching Service (TEPO and SUBEB) and Government Parastatals”.
He emphasised that despite the large number of employees duly registered by the State approved Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs), the State has never relented in ensuring that monthly remittances are made into the Retirement Savings Accounts (RSA) of every employee through the State Treasury to the PFAs, stressing that LASPEC also has the responsibility of monitoring and ensuring that the remittances sent are received by the PFAs accordingly.
While appreciating the State approved Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) and the Insurance Companies for their unflinching co-operation and efforts at ensuring that all the retirees have unfettered access to their pension benefits, Mr. Hussain advised the retirees to think carefully about their individual personal circumstances before choosing their exit option of either the Programmed Withdrawal provided by the PFAs or the Annuity provided by the Insurance Companies in accessing your benefits.
He said, “Let me reiterate that nobody has the right under Pension Reform Act to decide or force you to go for either of the options. It is your personal right and prerogative to decide whether to go the Programmed Withdrawal way or the Annuity way. However, I give you my absolute assurance that whichever way you go, there will be no hindrance towards accessing your benefits”.
The Head of Service, Mrs. Josephine Oluseyi Williams while rejoicing with the retirees, enjoined them not to turn their back to the Service, adding that their inputs and suggestions on how to better the lots of the citizenry through improved service delivery would be appreciated.
She appreciated Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) and members of the State Executive Council, for remaining steadfast to the ideals of the Contributory Pension Scheme and ensuring that funds are constantly dedicated to the redemption of the retirement Bond Certificates as required by law.
Earlier in his goodwill message, the Chairman, House of Assembly Committee on Public Accounts, Hon. Bolaji Yusuf Ayinla, commended LASPEC for making the retirees happy through the bond presentation. He also affirmed that his committee would on behalf of the Lagos State House of Assembly continue its oversight functions of ensuring that LASPEC is spending the monies appropriated to it judiciously.
Press & Public relations Officer