December 2, 2022

Crusader Sterling Pensions Limited and Guaranty Trust Company seems to be struggling with micro pension business as both register the least contributors among other Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) in Quarter 3, 2022.

While Crusader Sterling Pensions Limited registered only four contributors, Guaranty Trust Company registered one contributor during the period under review.

This does not complement the regulator, the National Pension Commission (PenCom) plans to capture informal sector workers. The commission aims to capture market women, members of the road transport workers, textile, garment, and tailoring associations, tricycle operators and commercial motorcycle operators’ associations, butchers associations, workers in the movie and performing art industry, mechanics and workers in the automotive industry as well as single professionals like lawyers, accountants among others into the Micro Pension Plan (MPP) in no distance time.

While these two companies fall into the bottom PFAs to capture contributors into the MPP in Q3, Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers Limited takes the lead in the business.

PenCom made this known in its Micro Pension Registration Schedule, September 2022, which showed the Retirement Savings Accounts (RSAs) registered in third quarter.

PenCom noted that the total number of registered contributors in the quarter stood at 4,193.

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The report further showed that Sigma Pensions Limited also registered 16 contributors in the quarter, while

Stanbic IBTC Pension registered 1137 contributors, representing the highest number registered in the quarter under review.

The PFA has, however, registered 13,514 since inception in 2019 till September 2022, out of the total 84,612 registered by the 18 existing PFAs in the country.

Meanwhile, ARM Pension Managers (PFA) Limited has the highest contributors which was 21,375 since inception of the MPP in 2019 and Sigma Pensions at the bottom with 16 contributors.

The Director-General, PenCom, Mrs. Aisha Dahir-Umar, while speaking with journalists, said efforts to drive the MPP and capture informal sector workers remain one of the focus areas of the commission

Mrs. Dahir-Umar, who was represented by the Head of Corporate Communications Department, Mr. Abdulqadir Dahiru, reassured contributors in the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) of its commitment to the safety of pension funds.

She emphasised that adequate structures have been put in place to ensure the safety of the funds.

She reiterated that the objective was to bring in to the CPS, Nigerians working in the informal sector and those who are self-employed through the MPP.

Therefore, she said, it is of utmost importance to make the Plan popular among informal sector workers and the self-employed.

She said: “The MPP was conceptualised to expand pension coverage to the informal sector, including small-scale businesses, entertainers, professionals, petty traders, artisans, and entrepreneurs.

“It was implemented to curb old-age poverty by assisting the workers, as mentioned above, to contribute while working and build long-term savings to fall back on when they become old.

“To create awareness of the Micro Pension Plan, the commission, in collaboration with the Pension Fund Operators Association of Nigeria, is championing an Industry Media Campaign in major cities in the country’s six geo-political zones,” she added.

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