Retirees under the Contributory Pension Scheme who could not be entitled to monthly pensions have withdrawn their money from their respective Retirement Savings Accounts.
Foreign nationals ready to return to their countries after making voluntary contributions under the CPS have similarly opted out of the scheme.
Figures obtained by our correspondent from the National Pension Commission on ‘en bloc and foreigners benefits’ revealed that the two categories of workers withdrew a total of N20.26bn from the growing assets under the management of the operators.
It was also discovered that most of the retirees affected were those whose employers (private, state and federal) had been deducting their monthly salary but not remitting the deducted amount to the Pension Fund Administrators.
The report stated, “The commission granted approval for the payment of the entire RSA balances of the categories of retirees whose RSA balances were N550,000 or below and considered insufficient to procure programmed withdrawal or an annuity of a reasonable amount over an expected lifespan. This also included foreign nationals who decided to return to their home countries after making voluntary contributions under the CPS.”
According to the information, the contributors comprise private sector employees, federal and state workers who did not have above N550,000 in their savings as of the time they reached 50 years and met the conditions of retirement under the CPS.
The Pension Reform Act stated that retirees could only access their monthly pensions either by subscribing to programmed withdrawal administered by the PFAs or annuity sold by the life insurance companies.
To have any of these policies, retirees must have more than N550,000 in their RSA or the total balance would be returned to them.