The executives of the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), has held its second meeting with stakeholders to track down ways of extending and deepening inclusion of the Basic National Social Security Scheme to self-employed workers.
The meeting, which was held in Accra, Ghana sought stakeholders agree and and support to expand the inclusion of the SSNIT Scheme to independently employed and workers in the informal sector.
The Director-General of SSNIT, Dr. John Ofori-Tenkorang, proclaimed that, it has become important to stretch out coverage to informal sector workers not exclusively to increase active membership and contributor base of the Scheme but also to ensure that every worker in Ghana enjoys social protection.
The move is to assist with reducing poverty and over-reliance on family relations and companions during retirement age.
By and by, a little over 14,000 independently employed workers contribute to the SSNIT Pension Scheme. This low coverage is ascribed to the nature of Ghana’s economy, where the vast majority are occupied with their own organizations and don’t see the need to enlist onto an organized federal retirement aide plot.
Industry experts declare that if extraordinary measures are not taken and executed to have such workers placed on a formalized government managed retirement scheme, it will prompt an increase in poverty among the aged sooner rather than later.
The International Labour Organisation (ILO), in its 2019 policy report identifies the situation where many social security schemes primarily focus on providing coverage for salaried employees as a major challenge.
According to the report, the holes in social protection for independently employed workers raises concerns not just for the acknowledgment of their common freedom to social security scheme, but additionally for social and economic turn of events and the accomplishment of the Sustainable Development Goals, specifically, target 1.3 on social protection systems.
Speaking on the subject matter, Dr. Ofori-Tenkorang made sense of the advantages of the SSNIT Scheme and the worth they give to Members. These advantages include Superannuation (Old age) Pension, Invalidity Pension, Survivors’ Lump aggregate, and Emigration Benefit.
“The SSNIT Scheme pays minimum pension by subsidising pensions for pensioners whose salaries were woefully low when they were in active service or contributors who contributed on a minimal salary to the scheme”.
He added that the “Trust pays you till you pass on and the Scheme provides a life policy by paying survivors when a Member passes on”.
For Members who can never again work because of long-lasting illness or disease, the Scheme also pays such Members Invalidity benefits paying little mind to age and with extremely insignificant commitments.
Meanwhile, self-employed Ghanaians are happy they will now be part of this engagement. They have been yearning for such an engagement for a long time. Once you are healthy and sound, it is necessary that people contribute to the Scheme and receive the benefits during retirement.