The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) has successfully addressed the challenges faced by pensioners across the country, according to Chioma Ejikeme, the Executive Secretary of PTAD. Speaking at a forum with pensioners and stakeholders in the north-west zone on Monday, Ejikeme highlighted the significant progress made by PTAD in revolutionizing the management of the direct benefits scheme (DBS) pension.
Ejikeme emphasized that since its establishment a decade ago, PTAD has been dedicated to effecting positive and sustainable changes in DBS pension management. Prior to the creation of PTAD, the DBS system was marred by allegations of fraud, corruption, and inefficiencies. However, the establishment of the directorate has transformed the narrative surrounding pension administration.
“The determination of PTAD to revolutionize pension administration under the defined benefits scheme (DBS) in Nigeria is unwavering. The processes and controls implemented by PTAD have significantly contributed to the positive changes witnessed in the management of the Defined Benefit Pension scheme,” stated Ejikeme.
She acknowledged the challenges inherited by PTAD upon its inception but expressed satisfaction with the fruitful outcomes resulting from the directorate’s diligent efforts. The journey, she said, has been marked by field verifications, mobile verifications, the establishment of a comprehensive pensioners’ database, accurate benefit computation, timely monthly pension payments, and the settlement of long-overdue pension arrears. These achievements have been the result of creativity, dedication, commitment, and persistence.
Ejikeme acknowledged that although the situation is not yet perfect, PTAD remains committed to making further strides in the administration of the defined benefit scheme. Through the unwavering support of President Muhammadu Buhari, PTAD has successfully liquidated the unfunded liabilities inherited from defunct/privatized agencies, except for NITEL/MTEL, which still has a remaining balance of 36 months. PTAD is fully committed to resolving this outstanding balance.
In 2021, PTAD launched the “I AM Alive” confirmation solution, aimed at identifying pensioners who are still alive. Ejikeme highlighted the successful completion of the pilot phase, during which the application was tested on 50,000 randomly-selected pensioners across the six geo-political zones. Building on this success, PTAD fully rolled out the solution for use by pensioners on April 14, 2023. To ensure effective service delivery and prevent website congestion, the availability of the confirmation solution has been staggered according to departments.
Ejikeme emphasized that PTAD’s commitment to the welfare of pensioners remains unwavering, and the directorate will continue to engage with various pension unions to ensure the delivery of quality services.