The Forum for Public Sector Registered Pension Schemes on Friday assured public sector workers that the pension funds currently under the management of the four public sector schemes have been invested in accordance with permitted investment guidelines.
The forum made up of 13 entities in a communique after a meeting in Accra, which discussed reports of Government’s intention to commit funds investments in the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), that is the Ghana Amalgamated Trust (GAT), urged public sector workers to remain calm.
The Communique copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra said: “No funds have been placed with the GAT. The funds have been invested in line with the National Pension Regulators Authority permitted Investment Guidelines.
“Under the National Pension Act 2008 (Act 766 as amended) it is important to state that pension funds cannot be moved without the express approval of the trustee in charge of each scheme”.
The forum said: “as unions and associations that had set up the four public sectors occupational pension schemes, we will continue to monitor and take steps to safeguard the investments of our members so that the objective of having a better lump sum/gratuity would be realized”.
The communique was signed by: Mr Isaac Bampoe Addo, Executive Secretary of the Civil and Local Government Staff Association, Ghana; Mr Eric Angel Carbonu, National Association of Graduate Teachers; Mrs Perpetual Ofori-Ampofo, General Secretary; and Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association.
Others are: Mr. K. Ahenakwa-Quarshie, for the General Secretary Ghana National Association of Teachers; Mr Derrick Anna, General Secretary Judicial Service Staff Association, Ghana; and Mr Nathan Coompson, Government Hospital Pharmacists Association.
The rest are: Mr Franklin O. Ansah, Health Service Workers’ Union; Mr Augustine S. Karbo, General Secretary Teachers and Educational Workers Union of TUC; Mr Frederick Kporxah, National Vice Secretary, Ghana Association of Certified Registered Anaesthetists; and Mr King Ali Awudu, Coalition of Concerned Teachers, Ghana.
The forum’s communique was necessitated by the Finance Ministry’s statement on January 5, which, stated that Government has worked with an Advisor and selected Pension Funds to structure the SPV under the GAT, to support solvent and well-run indigenous banks, which were otherwise having difficulties meeting the new minimum capital requirement deadline, to meet their obligations.
The statement said President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, concerned about the difficulties such well-run, solvent Ghanaian-owned banks were likely to face in raising capital on their own, set up a committee to explore various options available for these banks in order to retain and strengthen local interest in the banking sector.
It said based on the Committee’s recommendation, an Advisor was appointed to facilitate the setting up of an SPV: the Ghana Amalgamated Trust (GAT), with the objective of raising funds from the private sector, mainly Pension Funds, to support eligible indigenous banks that successfully completed the due diligence process.
Qualifying banks for GAT investment have been determined on the basis of their solvency, local ownership, minimum pre-investment capitalization of GH¢120 million and an independent valuation by PwC.
The statement said GAT has committed funds from pension funds and other investors, through a bond programme, with proceeds of up to GH¢2.0 billion to be used for equity investment in the eligible indigenous banks, as determined by the investors.
It said the bonds issued to the Pension Funds would be listed on the Ghana Fixed Income Market (GFIM) for liquidity purposes.
According to the statement, the GAT also seeks to provide business development support to facilitate the strengthening of these banks, both from a perspective of corporate governance and growth.