The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate (PTAD) on Wednesday said no form of payment or gratification is required to process or effect payment of any outstanding to Defined Benefit Scheme (DBS) pensioners.
The Executive Secretary of the Directorate, Dr Chioma Ejikeme said this at the opening of PTAD 2020 Sensitisation and Capacity Building for anti-graft and other related agencies on the scheme in Abuja.
The theme of the three-day sensitisation workshop is: ‘Zero-fraud pension administration defines benefit scheme’.
Ejikeme said that the pensioners did not require any form of payment or gratification to process or effect any outstanding payment to pensioners.
She said that the directorate was working with security and anti-graft agencies to curtail the menace.
According to her, the agencies include the Department of State Security (DSS), Nigerian Police Force (NPF), Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC).
Ejikeme said that the synergy with these agencies had yielded some level of success in the apprehension of some fraudsters, especially at verification centres.
“Through several collaborations, PTAD has been able to mitigate the perpetration of fraudulent activities carried out by syndicates and persons who fraudulently take advantage of the pensioners.
“These collaborations include working with the Anti-corruption and Transparency Unit (ACTU) of the ICPC and the EFCC by reporting occurrences of fraudulent calls and furnishing these agencies with the caller details for investigation purposes,” Ejikeme said.
She said that the directorate deemed it fit to engage the stakeholders in order to continually re-strategise.
Ejikeme said this would enable it come to terms with the realities of fraudulent activities as it concerns the management of pensions.
The executive secretary commended the anti-graft agencies, Public Complaints Commission and SERVICOM, who were part of the channels of informing the directorate of the concerns of the pensioners under the DBS.
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed said that the workshop would further equip the directorate and the anti-graft agencies with modern conventional techniques to work.
The minister, who was represented by the Director Home Finance, Mr Stephen Okon advised the participants to exchange ideas and articulate initiative that would improve the administration of the DBS scheme.
The Commissioner of Police, Pension Office, DSP Ibrahim Tarfa, said that the introduction of the Contributory Pension Scheme and establishment of PTAD as a result of the pension reforms act of 2004 and 2014 had sanitised the pension scheme in the country.
Tarfa said that the police would continue to partner with PTAD on the battle ahead in ensuring zero fraud pension administration was achieved with the corporation of other stakeholders. (NAN)