Over 32 months have gone by since Micro Pension Plan was launched in 2019 by President Mohammadu Buhari with high expectations that micro pension plan buster has finally taken position and ready to spin success. Also, the preparatory work by the National Pension Commission came up with conclusions that pointed to expected success. However, all calculations that millions will come into the voluntary contribution net has fallen far below mark with only 72000 contributors walking in so far.
This off the mark reality captured the planners of the this year’s media parley and they chose the theme, ‘Micro Pension- Challenge & Opportunities’ to address what went wrong and put corrections in place just in time to set sail for 2022.
The resource person on the set is the head, micro pension department, National Pension Commission, Dauda Ahmed. He was fair and squared in his submissions to questions. With only 22000 contributors registered as at November 2021, Ahmed said the MPP has stayed on the fairly low traction lobby. In contrast with the mandatory contributory pension scheme with high traffic.
He said a major setback has been the prancing inadequate awareness, pointing out that engagement with the intended voluntary contributors has not earned the mark of embrace and therefore, the need to reach the informal sector that encompasses professionals in several dimensions was emphasised.
The disposition of ‘this is not what we expected’ has made the Pension Fund Operators of Nigeria and the regulator PenCom to return to the drawing board and channel their resources to penetrate the informal sector in a way that was not done before.
What is unfolding in this direction to correct the downturn in micro pension is explained by the managing director at Access Pension Fund Custodian, Idu Okwuosa, who disclosed steps taken to reach three major markets in Lagos which includes Alaba International Market were fruitful. She said deliberations were concluded with high expectations that by January 2022, MPP is expected to bounce back.
Besides these ongoing discussions, Okwuosa said, jointly the industry is coming up next year with media campaign that will drive the penetration and awareness that will make the voluntary micro pension segment bourgeoning with contributors that was initially expected coming to light.