The Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, which is the agency managing the Sovereign Wealth Fund, has ruled out the possibility of paying dividend to the three tiers of government from its 2017 profit despite the fact that the fund has been profitable in the last five years.
Even as the National Pension Commission(Pencom) has said it will soon commence the verification of retirees in the federal service.
The Acting Director-General, PenCom, Aisha Dahir-Umar, said this during the pre-retirement seminar in Lagos for Federal Government workers due to retire in 2019 under the Contributory Pension Scheme.
It would be recalled that the Act setting up the NSIA stipulates that if it makes returns consistently for five years after commencing operations, then it has to pay dividend to the three tiers of government.
The agency commenced operations in 2013 with $1.55bn and there had been expectations that dividend would be paid at the end of the 2017 financial period. But speaking during a press briefing on the financial performance of the agency, the Managing Director, NSIA, Mr. Uche Orji, said the issue of dividend payment was discussed by the board but was stepped down till 2019.
According to him the law stipulates ” that we should show profits in each of the three funds consistently for five years, after which we will start declaring dividend, and this is the fifth year of showing profitability.
“The dividend policy was considered by the board but we decided to step it down and consider it again 2019
Dahir-Umar said “As part of our annual regulatory activities, the commission has finalised arrangements to commence the verification of prospective retirees, who will be retiring in year 2019 from the public service. The verification exercise is scheduled to be undertaken from June 25 to August 17, 2018 in 15 centres across the country,” she stated.
Dahir-Umar explained that the impending exercise necessitated the need to undertake adequate sensitisation and public enlightenment in order to prepare prospective retirees for the steps to take towards a hitch-free retirement life.
According to her, the commission decided to enlighten them on the enrolment exercise and documentation requirements, accessing retirement and terminal benefits under the CPS and life after retirement.