The Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) is planning to move policy away from investing in non-profit social businesses to protect contributors’ finances, according to Minister for Employment and Labour Relations Ignatius Baffour-Awuah.
This was in response to concerns raised by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) over the failure of some enterprises, notably Metro Mass Transit and Kumasi Abattoir, to pay dividends to SSNIT for the past ten years.
Chairman of the Committee, James Klutse Averdzi, inquired if SSNIT was in a position to pay pensions if they were not receiving dividends from businesses they have an interest in.
“SSNIT is managing the contributions of the members and you need to manage the funds to the extent that when it comes to payment of their benefits you will be in the position to pay. If you don’t manage the funds well, it will get to a point when you will not be able to pay their pensions.”
“So workers are concerned that you do good investments that will bring you returns so that the value of the contributions will not be lost. If you don’t do a good investment, then there is going to be a difficulty at the end,” he added.
Mr Baffour-Awuah responding said, “I think that your admonition is well taken and going forward the policy direction they have to take especially those that are socially inclined like the Metro Mass Transit and Kumasi Abattoir, certainly, those will not be driven by profit because they are providing social services.”
“But whether we are going to keep SSNIT financing social projects is something which policy decision ought to be taken. And I want to assure you as the Minister responsible for the sector that is not going to be the order of the day.”