By Sola Alabadan / Senior Correspondent
The National Pension Commission (PenCom) has mandated the Pension Transitional Arrangement Department (PTAD) to regularly verify the pensioners registered on its database with a view to determining their ‘alive status’.
PTAD was established in accordance with Sections 30 and 31 of the Pension Reform Act 2004 and assigned the responsibility of overseeing the management of pension under the defined benefit scheme for pensioners not transiting to the Contributory Pension Scheme.
The agency is also required to, on a monthly basis, render returns of the comprehensive list of pensionable staff, pensioners, deceased pensioners and their next of kin to PenCom.
Shortly after PTAD was established, the agency had carried out enrollment of pensioners under its purview to ensure that the authenticities of their records are fully established prior to the registration of the pensioners on the PTAD database.
PenCom stated that “Subsequent to the initial verification of pensioners, the PTAD shall conduct, on a periodic basis, continuous verifications for already verified pensioners whose records and biometrics have been inputted into the database with a view to determining their alive status.”
The commission added that “Such verification should be conducted annually, in the minimum. To this end, the PTAD shall put in place a system for continually verifying already enrolled pensioners. Such a system should allow for the verification of pensioners at their own convenience and should be based on their presentation of an approved mode of identification at their various pay points i.e. banks. The Pensioners Payroll must be updated to reflect the outcomes of such continuous verifications. Accordingly, the PTAD shall ensure that all pensioners who are not so verified are suspended from the payroll pending the confirmation of their aliveness or otherwise.”
The PTAD was also directed to superintend over the payment of pensions to already verified pensioners by maintaining a comprehensive and authentic pension payroll based on an updated database.
Besides, the PTAD is required to automate the process of determining pension benefits that shall effectively eliminate delays and errors. The pension payroll shall be prepared on a monthly basis and payments shall be effected by the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OAGF), directly to the pensioners’ bank accounts. The PTAD shall ensure that only verified pensioners are included in the payroll.
Source : Independent