The National Pension Commission (PenCom) recovered N384.28 million pension contributions owed workers from 34 defaulting employers.
According to the Director-General of PenCom, Aisha Dahir-Umar, the companies were fined N191.22 million for not remitting N193.06 million pension contributions.
The penalty and pension contribution amounts to N384.28 million, and the sum was recovered in the first quarter (Q1) of 2023.
Dahir-Umar made this known on Thursday at the 2023 Labour Writers Association of Nigeria (LAWAN) workshop, where she spoke on the theme; ‘Securing the Future: the Benefits of the Contributory Pension Scheme to Nigerian Workers’.
She also revealed that between January 2012 to March 31, 2023, PenCom has recovered N24.53 billion, with actual pension contribution accounting for N12.44 billion of the total sum and N12.09 billion penalty.
As of the end of the first quarter this year, Dahir-Umar said the value of pension assets stood at N15.58 trillion from 9.95 million Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) members.
Dahir-Umar, who was represented at the event by PenCom’s Head of Corporate Communications, PenCom, Abdulqadir Dahiru, said: “PenCom is committed to protecting workers’ interests and ensuring that employers pay pension contributions as and when due.”
Elaborating on the effort of PenCom to ensure employers stay committed to the pension contributions, Dahiru stated: “PenCom is determined to ensure that Nigerian workers receive their retirement benefits in time.
“The commission’s meticulous regulation and supervision of the pension industry had ensured that pension assets and the contributory pension scheme (CPS) membership continued to grow.”
The participants were told about PenCom’s innovation, following the commission’s decision to allow retirement savings account (RSA) holders to pay for mortgages with a portion of their retirement savings.
“We recognise that many individuals face challenges in securing adequate housing upon retirement, and we aim to address this issue by unlocking the value of their pension savings to facilitate homeownership.
“Under this new policy, RSA holders who have contributed to their accounts for at least five years and met specific eligibility criteria can utilise up to 25 percent of their pension savings as equity contribution towards acquiring residential properties.
“This policy aligns with our commitment to ensuring that pension funds catalyse economic development and social wellbeing.”