The National Pension Commission has kicked-off a pre-retirement workshop for 14,000 prospective 2019 retirees under the Contributory Pension Scheme to bridge the knowledge gap of retirees on the scheme.
The Acting Director-General, PenCom, Aisha Dahir-Umar, said at the workshop in Lagos on Monday that over eight million retirees had been imparted with the knowledge of the country’s pension scheme through the annual event.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the workshop is scheduled to hold in 15 centres across the country from June 4 to June 8 for the retirees in public service.
The centres include: Lagos, Enugu, Calabar, Ilorin, Gombe, Sokoto, Kano, Porthacourt, Benin, Bauchi, Nasarawa, Owerri, Lokoja, Ibadan and the Federal Capital Territory.
Dahir-Umar, represented by Ekanem Aikhomu, Head of Benefits and Insurance Department, PenCom, said the workshop was part of PenCom’s regulatory activities.
She said the commission had also finalised arrangements for the verification of the 2019 prospective retirees from June 25 to August 17 in the 15 centres.
She said: “So, the impending verification exercise necessitated the need to undertake the sensitisation and public enlightenment to prepare prospective retirees on steps to take towards a hitch-free retirement life.”
Dahir-Umar reiterated the Commission’s commitment to safeguard the interest of retirees.
She said: “My dear retirees the achievements recorded by the Commission in the last 14 years would not be possible without the support of stakeholders and esteemed contributors.
“Therefore, in order not to betray your trust in us, the commission must uphold its integrity.
“All the pension contributions under CPS since it took off in 2004 are very safe and not embezzled as some of us think.”
Speaking on the country’s pension assets, Dahir-Umar said the number of contributors increased from 7.50 million as at March 31, 2017 to 8.9 million in April.
“Likewise the net assets value of the pension assets increased from 7.999 trillion in February to N8 trillion in April 2018.
She said: “This increase is attributed to new contributions received, interest on fixed income securities and net gains on equities and mutual fund investments.”
NAN reports that over 1500 prospective 2019 retirees participated in the workshop in Lagos.