ABOUT NATIONAL PENSION COMMISSION
The National Pension Commission (PenCom) was established by the Pension Reform Act (PRA) 2014 and later PRA 2014 to ensure effective administration of the Nigerian Pension Industry. It has been empowered by the PRA 2014 to superintend on all pension matters in Nigeria including supervision and regulation of the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) and the old Defined Benefits (DB) Scheme as well as the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD).
The Commission operates under a Board of Directors (Board) headed by a part-time Chairman with the Director General as the Chief Executive Officer. The day – to – day running of the Commission is handled by the Executive Committee, which comprises of the Director General and four Executive Commissioners who are also members of the Board. Each Commissioner heads a Division that is made up of Departments and Units that are headed by Heads of Departments and Units respectively.
The Commission had established institutional and legal frameworks to facilitate the successful implementation of the provisions of the PRA 2014. In this regard, 21 Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs), 4 Pension Fund Custodians (PFCs) and 7 Closed Pension Fund Administrators (CPFAs) were licensed and currently operate in the industry. The total Pension Fund Assets had grown to N5.2 trillion ($26.4 billion) as at December 2015 with total membership count of 6.8 million as at the same period.
The payment of retirement benefits under the CPS by FGN to retirees as well as death claims to beneficiaries of its deceased employees is now regular and timely. Unless for the delays being experienced in the settlement of accrued benefits whenever there are delays in the funding of the Retirement Benefits Bond Redemption Fund by the FGN.
In the exercise of its statutory responsibilities, the Commission had conducted series of enlightenment and sensitization campaigns through the media and at various seminars, roundtable discussions and conferences. Some of these conferences were conducted in collaboration with other institutions including multilateral agencies such as the World Bank/IFC and the Commonwealth Secretariat. In this vein, the Commission has been collaborating with the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA) to conduct annual seminars to promote compliance by employers.
There are currently 25 State Governments that passed Pension Reform Laws while others are at Bills stage. The PRA 2014 has made the implementation of CPS compulsory for the States and Local Governments and PenCom has been providing all necessary support to these important tiers of Government to ensure their successful adoption of the Scheme. The Scheme had facilitated increased transparency and accountability in determining budgetary estimates for payments of pensions by the Federal Government and all the State Governments that adopted it.
Indeed, in achieving the above milestones, Commission had collaborated with some government agencies notably Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE), Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria, and National Bureau for Statistics (NBS). The Commission is also being supported by the Bureau for Public Procurement (BPP) in its efforts to ensure compliance by eligible employers. The BPP Act 2007 has provided that any company soliciting for contracts with any of the agencies of the Federal Government must produce evidence of compliance with the PRA 2004 before it can bid for the contract.
The PRA 2014 provided that PenCom reports to Mr. President and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces. Also, the Senate and the House of Representatives have oversight functions on the Commission through the Senate Committee on Establishment and Public Service and the House Committee on Pensions respectively.