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02.09.2005 General News

SSNIT to sue defaulters


Cape Coast, Sept.2, GNA, - A total of 15 enterprises in business establishment in the Central Region owe the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) more than 35.8 billion cedis through social security contributions and penalties for defaulting. They are, Cambridge Preparatory School, Tan sawmill, Peejay construction, Mfansteman Press, Oyster Bay hotel, heaven's lodge, Asaquah construction, swap construction and chapel square Mobil filling station.

The rest are Akaidoo Enterprise, Grogetes Enterprise, Phil "B" Enterprise, Wamkom Salt Industry, Castle Beach Resort and Faith and Trust Ghana limited.

They are to be prosecuted on Monday September 12. Mr Ian Osutuye, Cape-Coast branch manager of SSNIT who made this known to the GNA in an interview at Cape Coast on Thursday said some of them have been indebted to SSNIT as far back as 1999.

He said Tan Sawmill had the highest debt of 141.1 million cedis with Phil "B" the lowest amount of 1.1 million cedis and it was in view of this that SSNIT had decided to take court action, since many of the employers have failed to pay after several demand notices have been served on them.

Mr Osutuye expressed concern about the way some employers behave towards the staff of SSNIT when they go to them to collect their workers contribution and said they were rude and insulting and very uncooperative and rather turn round to accuse the Trust of not paying their workers good pension benefit.

According to him, the defaulting establishment have been given "a long rope it was time for them to explain to the court why they have failed to honour their national obligation."

The Manager was also unhappy that some employers issued dud cheques knowing very well that they do not have money in their account and warned that anyone who issued such cheque would be prosecuted since it was criminal.

He said some employers also failed to register their new workers with SSNIT and task such employees to ensure that they were registered and their contributions promptly paid.

Mr Osutuye advised workers against colluding with their employers to under-declare their salaries, thereby reducing their contributions, adding, "what you pay today is the pension you will collect in future." He called on employers, who have difficulties in paying their workers contributions to negotiate with the Trust, adding, "If they fail to tell us their problems and after several warning and reminders we will have no option but to take legal action as the last resort since we have an obligation towards workers."

Mrs. Florence Asiedu-Serebour, Inspectorate supervisor, said the Trust had an obligation towards employees and that was why it has decided to prosecute the defaulting employers since their debt profile run into billion of cedis.

She said the various amount owed the Trust included penalties and urged the players to endeavour to pay their contributions promptly to avoid legal action against them.