By Rosemary Onuoha
The Contributory Pension Scheme, CPS, is arguably the most successful government initiative in recent times and a clear testimony to the effectiveness of private-sector-driven rendition of service in critical sectors. Chairman of Premium Pension Limited, Mr. Aliyu Dikko, who made this assertion, noted that year 2014 marked 10 years of the introduction of the CPS in the country and it was a general consensus that the industry has recorded tremendous successes.
Dikko said, “The cumulative funds under management stands at N4.7 trillion as against the N4.1 trillion reported in 2013. Membership enrolment stands at 6.5 million workers as against 6.1 million in 2013. These figures are mainly indicative of the fact that, the teething challenges of the industry have been surmounted and the initial skepticism has drastically reduced.”
According to Dikko, the promulgation of the Pension Reform Act 2014 which repealed the Pension Reform Act, 2004 has among other provisions graciously increased the total minimum contributions from 15% to 18% of the employee’s emolument, provide basis for extending the scheme to organisations having as less as 3 employees, allow RSA holders to utilize part of their balance as equity contributions for mortgage facilities and expanded the investment space by providing legal framework for investment abroad.
He however said that more work still has to be done in the area of public enlightenment on the workings of the industry and the immense advantages accruable from enrolling in the scheme. Meanwhile Dikko revealed that despite the declining employment opportunities that had negatively impacted on business generation drives, the company has expanded its horizon in terms of funds under management and number of Retirement Savings Accounts.
He said, “As at December, 2014 the company has several Funds Under Management (FUM), namely; Active RSA fund, Retiree RSA fund, CBN active and CBN Retiree fund, NNPC 1 & 2 fund UBN fund, SEC fund and FBN fund. Other funds under our company’s management include Jigawa State fund, NDIC fund, Intercontinental fund, Lagos Chanel Mgt fund, Rivers State fund and Niger state Legacy fund. The company has maintained robust relationship with existing institutional clients and is tirelessly working towards establishing new relationships.”
The Chairman stated that as part of the company’s effort to be the leading PFA in the pension industry in Nigeria, they engaged PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to facilitate the development of a 5-year strategy plan (2014 – 2018) to supplant the strategy implemented between 2009 to 2013. “For the effective implementation of this plan, a corporate strategy department with a functional research and development unit was created to drive the execution of the initiatives embedded in the document.