CSO Applaud MPP, Seek Confirmation for Ag PenCom Boss

The recent commissioning by President Muhammadu Buhari of the Micro Pension Plan (MPP) scheme for the informal sector and self-employed   has been applauded by a civil society group, Citizens Watch Advocacy Initiative (CWAI) as a people-centered project.

Analysing the implications of the MPP for the economy, CWAI noted that besides boosting the economy and stabilizing the pension assets in the country,  the launching of the MPP  scheme will afford the country’s widespread small business, informal the opportunity of setting aside a percentage of their earnings  for their retirement, so as to have a comfortable life after service.

In a similar vein, CWAI gave kudos to the Acting Director-General of the National Pension  Commission, (PenCom), Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar for initiating measures to reposition the apex regulatory pension body and the pension industry since she took over the mantle of leadership in acting capacity.

The CWAI maintained that under her leadership, the hopes of retirees has been rekindled while the industry has completely been transformed and undergone massive innovations and sustainable growth financially to help Nigerians prepare for their retirement years.

The group expressed these sentiments in a press statement signed by its  Executive Director, Com James Okoronkwo and Media Director, Com Dennis Esumobi, stressing that the virtues of the Dahir-Umar leadership at PenCom include: total overhaul; paradigm shift from the previous ways of doing things; good corporate governance rating; core values of integrity; patriotic reforms in organizational culture and the transparent leadership entrenched in the management ethics which has made the Commission what it is today: a global brand and player in the industry internationally.

They emphasized that the rapid improvement in pension reforms, payments and awareness campaign has helped to increase the incidence of benefits to retirees which has also led to growing the economic base of the financial sector; as well as rekindling the hopes and aspirations of retirees and restoring the credibility of the pension regulator in the hearts of Nigerians.

CWAI also commended and applauded the Aisha Dahir-Umar led management for their forthrightness and vision in repositioning and rebranding of the pension administration in Nigeria for professionalism and effective service delivery in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s‘Next Level’ agenda through dynamic, purposeful reforms of the sector which gave birth to increased enforcement powers; increased the rate of contributors for employees in the CPS category; the introduction of new set of investment regulations that enable Pension Funds  Administrators (PFAs) to invest in infrastructure development provided that the pension funds will be invested in real estate development and also taking the pragmatic essential steps to professionalize pensions and make it future proof.

CWAI therefore expressed confidence in the management of PenCom and called on Nigerians, stakeholders, trade associations, NGOs, CSOs and organizations to join hands with PenCom to enlighten its members and Nigerians on the importance of early savings and retirement plans thereby supporting the efforts by the present leadership to empower retirees and create the needed environment for the industry to thrive and also urged the present administration  to immediately confirm the appointment of Aisha Dahir-Umar, especially  for the historic launch of the MPP  initiative for the inclusion of the informal sector of the country into the national pension scheme

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