The Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) as of September this year, had saved GH¢20 million by deleting 6, 452 pensioners from its payroll, with an additional GH¢4 million plus, expected by the end of the year.
The total investments of the Trust’s assets as at September 2018 was GH¢9.38 billion, representing a growth of 2.4 per cent in asset value; as against that of September 2017 value of GH¢9.16 billion.
Dr John Ofori-Tenkorang, the Director-General of SSNIT, announced these at an engagement programme with some editors and senior journalists in Accra, on Thursday night.
He said SSNIT was making significant gains on its investments and other endeavours following the prudent internal and external management and cost saving practices it had been implementing since 2017.
On the deletion of the names, Dr Ofori-Tenkorang explained that the action was taken in an exercise with the banks, which monitored dormant accounts over time and terminated those it deemed ‘ghost pensioners’.
However, he said, it had an account with the Bank of Ghana, from which it restored the monies of those who were later proven to be alive.
On the financial gains, he explained that Trust’s investment portfolio registered a 5. 77 per cent real returns in 2017; as against -5.93 per cent the previous year.
The performance, he said exceeded the actuarial target of 3.25 per cent.
On the Trust’s Treasury Policy, the Director-General said under the revised policy, some funds had been invested at T-bill rates plus 5.3 per cent, even though it had targeted to invest for the T-bill rates plus a minimum of three per cent.
Prior to 2017, the Trust invested funds with the commercial banks and financial institutions for T-bill rates plus one per cent.
Dr Ofori-Tenkorang stated: “At the end of 2017, value of our cash and near-cash instrument stood at about GH¢1 billion as opposed GH¢2.17 million at the end of 2016.
“The value of the Trust’s assets increased by GH¢1.376 billion in 2017 from GH¢8.4 billion to GH¢9.776 billion; as against a decrease of GH¢404.481 million in 2016”.
He said SSNIT would not invest in real estate again until it had rebalanced its accounts, while its Marketing Department was selling off some of the existing ones.
On the internal measures, he said, a significant reduction in foreign travels and accommodation expenses, had resulted in only GH¢1.57 million being spent out of the budgeted GHC¢8.34 million.
Additionally, the Director-General said:” A recent renegotiation of agreements of some ICT infrastructure, support and license fees has resulted in a savings of $8.52 million to the Trust, about half of this a recurrent expenditure.
“A newly signed Service Level Agreement for three years is saving the Trust two million US dollars compared to the previous Maintenance Contract. Also an amount of $15, 281,176.87 and GH¢16,091,579.46 are to be claimed as refunds from one of the IT Solution vendors”.
Dr Ofori-Tenkorang said the Trust would continue its drive to increase its membership and announced that it would rope in the low income earners in the informal sector with a tailor-made programme.
The Trust, established in 1972, under NRCD 127, manages the First Tier Contributions of 13.5 per cent of a worker’s basic salary. Eleven per cent of the amount is invested in the Social security Fund, while 2.5 per cent goes into the National Health Insurance Health Scheme.
As of October 2018, its active contributors stood at 1,520,567.
The highest paid pensioner receives GH¢51,269.43 a month, while the minimum pension paid is GH¢276.00
It currently operates under Act 766 (2008).