Over 9m Ghanaians have no form of pension — NPRA
Over nine million working Ghanaians have no form pensions, the Head of Corporate Affairs, National Pensions Regulatory Authority, Nana Sifa Twum, has disclosed.
He said most of these people were in the informal sector, adding that between the next five to 10 years, a lot of people would retire into poverty if that was not checked.
Speaking to the media at the launch of “Pension Sunday”, he said the country was struggling to rope in the informal sector onto the pension scheme because the scheme was set up on the wrong premise, with the notion that pension was for only formal sector workers.
He, therefore, urged all stakeholders in the industry to intensify their public education advocacy for workers in the informal sector to understand that they could also benefit from the pension scheme.
The ‘Pension Sunday’ was launched by the NPRA in collaboration with the Presbyterian Church of Ghana to jointly educate and sensitise church members in a bid to improve pension literacy and enhance pensions coverage in the country.
Under the initiative, the first Sunday of every October would be observed in all 5000 Presbyterian congregations across the country.
Mr Sifa Twum said through initiatives such as that, the NPRA had been able to rope in about seven per cent of informal sector workers onto the pensions scheme, with plans to increase this figure to 25 per cent within the next five years.
“There are two inevitable things in life, one would have to die or retire, and these require pragmatic preparations,” he stated.
He said the authority was working towards replicating Pensions Sunday in all churches.
Launching the programme, the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, Professor, Right Reverend Joseph Obiri Yeboah Mante, expressed optimism that the programme would bring about the needed awareness among Ghanaians, especially members of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana and whip up their enthusiasm to plan for their retirement.
He said the Bible required Christians to live in dignity and be financially sound and therefore the programme had come at the right time to help members prepare well towards their retirement.
Right Reverend Mante explained that the church worked towards the holistic well-being of its members and as members were fed with the spiritual information and assistances, they must also be well educated to live lives of high repute and dignity.
He called on the leadership of the Presbyterian Churches in the country to liaise with the NPRA in the regions to make this effective and successful.
He also appealed to the government to institute every October as a pension month to create awareness of pension matters adding that pension helped one to maintain his or standard of living in retirement, and savings provided important supplemental income for unforeseen expenses.