ORGANISED LABOUR is unhappy about issues stifling the smooth implementation of the second tier Pension Scheme, as stipulated in the National Pensions Act (Act 766) and the imposition of a trust by Government on all members in the Public services.
The various member unions of Organised Labour would, therefore, advise themselves on the next line of action. A statement issued and signed by Unions and Associations’ of occupational pension schemes within Public services, including executives of Civil and Local Government Association of Ghana (CLOGSAG), Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Ghana Medical Association (GMA),Teachers and Workers Union (TEWU), Hospital Services Workers Union (HSWU), Ghana Registered Nurses Association (GRNA IMC), Judicial Service Staff Association of Ghana (JUSAG) and Government Hospital Pharmacists’ Association (GHOSPA), among others, has stated that if by the July 14, 2014, directives have not been issued for the transfer of funds to the various public sector schemes, they will advise themselves.
It said they refuse to remain unconcerned when it is obvious that government’s action and inaction in the implementation of the mandatory Occupational Pension Scheme point to eventual collapse of the three scheme, namely Mandatory basic pension schemes one ,two and three respectively.
According to the organized labour Unions, it has become necessary to come together to fight as one body because all the schemes are currently going through trying and frustrating moments, saying the Board of National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NAPRA) has been saddled with another trust, the second Tier Pension Scheme for all workers on government pay roll.
The statement said “since 2012, when the idea of a single trust was mooted by the then Minister for Finance, the various unions and Associations have not relented in their efforts to draw Government’s attention to the anomaly in appointing Pensions Alliance Trust Ltd (PAT) as a sole trust to run the scheme”.
In a strongly-worded petition, Organized labour said it is not stated anywhere in the law that a Trust should be appointed and a scheme imposed on workers and that it was not right to appoint a company that had not obtained a registered and licensed scheme by NAPRA to be appointed as the sole trust for all public services.
“With respect to monthly contribution towards pension, the amount contributed by both employer and employee belongs to the worker and this is supported in the National Pension Act 2008, (ACT 766)”, the labour union stated. Organised Labour was emphatic that the appointment of PAT as the sole trust could be described as blatant use of force in a situation where the government has not provided any guarantee to workers as regard the minimum lump sum that they could be paid as beneficiaries.
It noted that in as much as it would be morally wrong to take control of money that does not belong to the Government; they deem it puzzling that the Government would find it convenient to unilaterally enter into a contract with Pensions Alliance Trust to manage the contributions of each public service worker in the various public services.
It noted that with the imposition of PAT on Government workers within the Public services, the government is needlessly boxing union members in the various public services into a corner in a scheme where the worker has the right to port membership to a trust of his choice.
It was further stressed that should PAT be allowed to operate the second tier scheme on behalf of Public Sector Workers, then that would be tantamount to the NPRA being teleguided by the government to take away the right of workers in the various public services to choose a trust of their own.
Source: The Chronicle
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