The Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) says following a decision in 2018 to withhold the pensions of persons who failed to renew their certificates, the institution has saved about GH¢235 million.
The Director-General of SSNIT, Dr Ofori Tenkorang, made the disclosure at the 5th quadrennial Delegates Conference of the National Pensions Association.
“…We decided to take the bold step to withhold pensions from pensioners who have not completed the renewal of their pensions certificate until the person reaches out to us then we come to you, authenticate you and then restore all the pensions that we’ve withheld. I am happy to tell you that since we started this exercise in 2018, we have withheld about GH¢235 million,” he announced.
The National Pensions provider has always had the challenge of ‘ghost names’ on its payment list, which is a drain on its resources and operations.
As part of efforts to address the situation, the annual renewal of pension certificates was introduced to streamline pension payments.
The pension certificates are issued to pensioners aged 72 who retired under PNDCL 247 and 75 years for those who retired under Act 766 and are renewed annually.
Since 2018, the Trust has monthly been deleting the names of pensioners aged 72 and above who fail to complete or renew their Pension Certificates.
Despite the success chalked, Dr Tenkorang stressed the need for effective measures to seal all the loopholes in the system for the benefit of the country.
“Ideally, the day someone passes away who is over that qualifying age, we are supposed to know about it so that we can stop the next pension payment from going out. Unfortunately, our systems in this country are not set out for that. My vision is for us to get there.”