One of Nigeria’s foremost pension managers, Stanbic IBTC Ltd., has said it has paid over N300 billion as retirement benefits since the beginning of the pension management scheme in 2006.
The executive director, investment/support unit of the bank, Oladele Sotunbo, made this known at the annual, zonal, IBTC Pension Managers pre-retirement forum, which had over 1000 civil servants in attendance, yesterday in Abuja.
Sotunbo said the bank with a current customer base of over 1.6 million retiree account and boasts of over N2trillion assets, convened the interaction to sensitise customers that are close to retirement on the requirements they need to access their retirement benefits easily when they retire.
He said: “One of the series of educating our customers, specifically what we had today was the pre-retirement forum. It is actually for our customers that are close to retirement. The objective is to bring them together to understand the requirements they need to do to access their retirement benefits easily when they retire.
“And also, to have a discussion with them around and what kind of investments they should be looking to do and also how to stay healthy while still working and more importantly, after retirement. It is largely to educate our clients, to interact with them and get feedback on our services. I think it’s been a success.”
According to him, “What we’ve seen overtime is that the biggest challenge of civil servants when it comes to preparing for retirement, is that typical of us as Nigerians in everything we do is that we leave things to the very last minute. That’s why we took it upon ourselves as pension managers to sensitise customers to prepare early, start early to prepare for retirement. The best time to start preparing is now. Ensure your account is being remitted by your employers and make sure your documentation is in order.”
The executive director added that the contributory pension scheme has been a success, saying people have retired and have been able to access their pensions, adding that it has taken us away from the old regime where people retire and go out queuing in the rain, sun to access their pension.
“This time around that is no longer the case this time around you retire, do your processes and at the end of the month in the comfort your home you get an alert of the pension being paid into your account,” he added.