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FG Allays Workers Fear, Says ,  No Plans To ‘Illegally Access’ Workers’ Savings, Pension Contributions

 Olushola Bello

The Federal Government on Thursday doused the fears of Nigerian workers, saying, there are no plans to “illegally access” workers’ savings and pension contributions.

There were reports that the Federal Government plans to tap from the pension and life insurance to develop infrastructure in the country.

The Minister of Finance and the Coordinator of the Economy, Wale Edun , while clarifying the comment attributed to him, said the government will not illegally access the savings and pensions of workers.

“It has come to my notice that there are stories making around that the Federal Government plans to illegally access the hard-earned savings and pension contributions of workers,” he said in a video released by the ministry on Thursday.

“Nothing could be further from the truth. The pension industry like most of the financial industry is highly regulated. There are rules, there are limitations about what pension money can be invested in and what it cannot be invested in.

“The Federal Government has no intention whatsoever to go beyond those limits and go outside those bounds which are there to safeguard the pensions of workers.”

According to the minister, what was discussed was “merely for information” with no approval taken.

“Merely for noting; merely for information, no approval was sought for any action whatsoever, there was an ongoing initiative drawing in all the major stakeholders in the long term savings industry, those that handle funds that are available over a long period to see how within the rules; within the regulations and the laws, these funds could be used maximally; most effectively to drive investment in key growth areas, infrastructure, housing and of course to find a way to provide Nigerians with affordable mortgages within this context.

“There’s no attempt or no consideration to provide less safe investments for pension funds or even insurance funds or any investment funds that are made available.

“No attempt whatsoever to increase the risk, no attempt whatsoever to lower the returns that would otherwise be earned. And we must remember that the Federal Government can provide guarantees where such are needed to unlock funding that would lead to growth, creation of jobs and the alleviation of poverty.

“It is an ongoing conversation, a challenge, a test for the best and the brightest in the financial industry to come up with solutions that whilst safeguarding the long term savings do provide an avenue that can help to boost growth in the economy.”

 businessstandardsng.com/a strategic cross-reporting intiative.

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