The National Pension Commission (PenCom) has urged Nigerians working in the informal sector to enroll in the Micro Pension Plan to guarantee a functional retirement plan that will protect them from old age poverty. According to Abdulqadir Dahiru, the Head of Corporate Communications of PenCom, 90% of Nigerian workers are in the informal sector and have no pension protection for old age, making them vulnerable to old age poverty.
Dahiru explained that the Micro Pension Plan platform provides workers in the informal sector with the opportunity to easily register and contribute to their pension at retirement in a flexible manner and in a safe and secure environment.
Dahiru also disclosed that the commission had started sensitization of the plan to communities, marketplaces, public gatherings, associations, and trade fair grounds across the country. He urged Nigerians to embrace PenCom’s acquisition of residential mortgages (residential houses) scheme for Retirement Savings Account (RSA) holders, noting that the commission was determined to ensure that RSA holders have houses of their own at retirement.
The PenCom spokesman recalled that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had approved no less than 34 mortgage banks to work with the PenCom and Pension Fund Operators in providing mortgage financing to contributors into the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) with their RSA balance.
He noted that contributors under the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) must have contributed for five years (60 months) cumulative of employer and employee’s mandatory contributions to be eligible to use their RSA balance for the acquisition of residential mortgages. Dahiru also explained the limit for equity contribution that qualifies a contributor and the use of Voluntary Contribution (VC) in line with the Voluntary Contribution guidelines. He hoped that the mortgage financing incentive would help to grow the number of contributors to the CPS scheme.