The pension fund grew from N4.61 trillion to N5.46 trillion between March 2015 and March 31, 2016, The Nation has learnt.
The growth between the first quarter 2015 and first quarter (Q1) 2016 represents 18.4 per cent (N0.85 trillion) in one year.
The fund has however grown to N5.96 trillion as at September last year.
This was contained in the National Pension Commission (PenCom) Quarterly Pension Industry Statistics released to journalists in Lagos. The industry witnessed 7.86 per cent growth in the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) membership during Q1 2016 as it recorded 7,071,791 contributors from 6,515,736 contributors it recorded in the preceding year.
Further analyses showed that the total monthly pension contribution made by contributors from both the public and private sectors into the RSAs of employees was N3.55 trillion as at the end of first quarter last year, an increase from N2.95 trillion as at the end of first quarter of the previous year.
This showed an increase of N0.6 trillion representing 16.9 per cent over the total contributions as at the end of the previous year.
Giving an update on the recovery of outstanding pension contributions and interest penalty from defaulting employers, the commission said it made a recovery of N348.81 million during the period under review as against N540.94 million recovered in 2015.
Surprisingly, many state governments did not implement the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) in their states as shown in the report. As at the end of Q1 2015, 26 state governments had enacted their pension laws with 10 states at the Bill stage. However, as at the end of Q1 2016, the number of states that have enacted laws on the CPS remained the same.
PenCom also disclosed that the total number of retirees on Programmed Withdrawal (PW) increased from 106,421 in Q1 2015 to 132,405 in Q1 2016.
The 25,984 increase represents 24.4 per cent from the figure recorded in the previous year
Similarly, the lump sum withdrawals within the quarter stood at N12.63 billion with an average of N4.36 billion paid monthly to the retirees of the scheme as monthly Programmed Withdrawal as at the end of the reporting period. This showed an increase from the N2.55 billion recorded in Q1 2015.
As regard the second pension payment option plan, Life Annuity, the Commission approved a total of 3,288 applications for annuity retirement plan as against the 1,914 applications received in 2015. This brings the total number of retirees receiving their retirement benefits through the annuity plan to 29,620 as at Q1 2016.
The 3,288 retirees received N3.96 billion as lump sum payment and paid annuity premium of N15.44 billion cumulating to a total of N41.85 billion and N145.04 billion as lump sum payments and annuity premium respectively. The retirees received average monthly annuity of N1.51 billion as at the end of March last year.
In 2015, a total premium of N79.18 billion was approved for payment to insurance companies on behalf of the 15,976 retirees in return for monthly payments amounting to N790.10 million 3.6 Approval of Death Benefits.
The Commission also approved death benefit of 2,006 deceased employees with total value of N6.24 billion for payment to the beneficiaries and administrators of the deceased employees in 2016.
In 2015, however, approvals were given for the payment of N4.44 billion as death benefits to the Next of Kins (NoKs) of 1,450 deceased employees
Cumulatively, a total of N100.52 billion was paid as death benefits (including life insurance) of 34,410 deceased employees from both the private and public sectors as at the end of first quarter, 2016.
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