The attention of the management of the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) was drawn to the editorial in the Daily Trust of Wednesday, July 15, 2020.
Unfortunately, the paper drew a conclusion that NSITF has shirked in its responsibilities to subscribers over the years.
The writer seemed to have reached this erroneous conclusion, especially, in view of the much publicised recent allegations of financial impropriety levelled against the suspended top management of the organisation.
We wish to state that the inference reached by the write-up is far from the truth. While the NSITF is an offshoot of the National Provident Fund (NPF)of 1961, its current function since it was reorganised in 2010 via the Employees Compensation Act (ECA) does not include payment of pension to workers.
The fund, therefore, owes no worker any pension arrears.
The NSITF also does not collect any money as contributions from workers. Instead, only one per cent of entire staff payroll is paid annually by the employers, money which must NOT be taken from the workers’ emoluments as stipulated by law.
We proudly state that the NSITF has rather been faithfully paying compensation to workers who suffer workplace injuries, disabilities or diseases, as well as to families of workers who have died in the course of duty/employment.
This of course applies to public and private sector workers whose employers dutifully register under the Employees Compensation Scheme (ECS) of NSITF as required by law.
We insist that at no time in the past or present has the fund denied workers who registered under the ECS their entitlements. Preventing workplace accidents and upholding workplace safety and health standards are part of our mandate which we have been fulfilling to our registered subscribers.
We have donated several ambulances and workplace safety equipment to several of our subscribers to ensure safety of their workers. Evidence abound of consistent and satisfactory delivery of the mandate of the NSITF through implementation of the ECS.
Indeed, over the past few years, NSITF has paid out over N3.5bn in compensation to workers and their bereaved dependants from 2011, taking care of 42,654 people as at June, 2020.
That is why you can hardly hear of rightful complaints of negligence by our subscribers.
We, therefore, emphatically refute the misleading and uncharitable editorial of the newspaper and implore it to correct itself, be more thorough henceforth and update itself with our operations in order not to inadvertently dent its own reputation and that of NSITF as a premium workers’ compensation dispensing organisation, which registered employers and employees can attest to.
Alexandra M. Mede, Deputy General Manager, Corporate Affairs
For: Acting Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of NSITF