The Lagos State Government has released the sum of N1.6 billion to be paid to 311 retirees from the Mainstream Civil Service, Local Governments, and State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Teachers Establishments and Pensions Office (TEPO) and other Parastatals of Government for the month of April.
Governor Akinwunmi Ambode has consistently demonstrated his commitment to the Post- Service welfare of his workers through the Lagos State Pension Commission (LASPEC).
The Honourable Commissioner, Establishments, Training and Pensions, Dr. Benson Oke Akintola, said that, the retirees comfort at old age was what led to the State’s monthly contribution into the Retirement Savings Account of Public servants. He also said that, this is given the same priority as that of payment of salaries. According to Dr. Akintola “It is a positive history that, the Lagos state Government has been consistently winning the National Pension commission’s award for the Best Pensions compliant State in the Federation. We aim to maintain this rating by continuing and improving on the timely payment of all pensions and other applicable benefits to our retiring workers upon disengagement from service”
He said this while speaking at the 38th Retirement Benefit Bond Presentation Ceremony on Friday, 28thApril, and 2017 at NECA House Auditorium, Ikeja, and Lagos.
He said the State Government has never failed to remit monthly contributions into the Retirement Savings Account of workers and as at March, 2017 about N78,592 billion had been credited into employees retirees Savings Accounts maintained by our 10 Pension Fund Administrators. He said: “In spite of the onerous funding obligations under the Contributory Pension Scheme, the administration of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode has been dogged in meeting this”
Similarly, we have also been consistent in setting aside the funds for the payment of accrued rights as provided for in the Pension Reform Law. On over 13,676 retirees /withdrawn staff, the State government has paid accrued pension rights of about N61, 422.560 billion since the commencement of the Retirement Benefit Bond Certificate Presentations in 2010. He assured the retirees that the Lagos State Government through LASPEC will continue to ensure that Public Service retirees not only get what is due to them statutorily, but also continue to receive, through other Agencies and Programmes, additional support and assistance that will add value to their lives in retirement.
Speaking further, Akintola advised the retirees not to hesitate to contact LASPEC or even the Ministry of Establishments, Training and Pensions should they require clarifications or advice regarding their retirement.
Speaking earlier, the Director-General – LASPEC, Mrs. Folashade Onanuga said that the immeasurable commitment of the Lagos State governor to the sustenance of the Contributory Pension Scheme so as to give our retirees a life of financial empowerment cannot be overemphasised. “We have received support from the Government on our ICT infrastructure and the calibre of personnel recruited/deployed to the Commission. Our interaction with our customers have been further enhanced with our 24/7 interactive Voice Response (IVR) application” she said.
She said that in a period of less than 2 years i.e. from August 2015 to April, 2017, the State Government through LASPEC has paid accrued pension rights in the sum of N27, 409.560 billion into the RSA of 6,270 retirees. In essence, she said that the State’s Government funding of employees’ pension rights under the Contributory Pension Scheme in a period of 10 years is over N140 billion.
She also added that this particular edition is a remarkable one in the sense that the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) is 10 years this month of April in Lagos State. She said the Commission has continued to improve on the quality of service delivery since the commencement of her operations.
She enjoined all the beneficiaries to take very good care of their health and physical being as well as desist from frivolous spending.
Onanuga was quick to make the beneficiaries understand that, the two exit options i.e. Programmed Withdrawal and Annuity for receipt of pension benefit monthly are now available.
Lawal, B. A. (Mrs.)
Public Affairs Officer