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18.05.2004 Regional News

Companies in Wassa West owe SSNIT 7.7 Billion Cedis

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Tarkwa (W/R), May 18, GNA - Some institutions, including Gold Mining Companies and banks in the Wassa West district, owe the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) a total of about 7.7 billion cedis.

The amount is the total social security contributions, deducted from the salaries of workers at these institutions but has not been paid to the SSNIT as required by law, Mr Joe Bansah, District Manager of SSNIT told the Ghana News Agency at Tarkwa after a day's seminar to educate employers and other stakeholders on their obligations to workers and SSNIT.

More than 200 participants including Employers, Heads of Government Departments and Corporations, Pensioners and representatives of workers attended the seminar, which was on theme: "Assisting SSNIT to ensure prompt and accurate payment of benefits".

Mr Bansah mentioned the Prestea Gold Resources Limited, Tropical Glass Factory, Ranels Mining Company Limited and Mansoman Rural Bank as some of the defaulting companies that had failed to pay workers contributions to the SSNIT in spite of persistent reminders.

Mr Kweku Osei-Bimpong, head of the public affairs of SSNIT, told the participants that management was determined to develop the Trust into a world-class financial institution dedicated to the promotion of economic security of the Ghanaian workers.

He said the failure of most employers to pay workers contributions to SSNIT was jeopardising the 2003-2007 strategic plan adopted by the Trust to give it a new image.

Mr Osei-Bimpong said the Trust would intensify its public education to enhance the achievement of set objectives under the plan, which would immensely benefit people mostly between the ages of 18 and 54 years. He appealed to employers to help the SSNIT to track down beneficiary of SSNIT loans in the efforts to recover such loans. SSNIT has adopted a new initiative to improve its services, he said, adding that, it had been expected that employers would help to administer an efficient pension scheme.

Mrs Mabel Owusu-Boakye, deputy SSNIT area manager in charge of the Western and Central regions, explained the various types of benefits and the mode of payment under the SSNIT pension scheme.

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