NSITF ‎Act For Amendment To Accommodate More Social Protections – Acting MD

NSITF ‎Act For Amendment To Accommodate More Social Protections – Acting MD
Chris Steven,  Abuja

The Acting Managing Director of Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF), Ismail Agaka has disclosed that the National Assembly is currently in the process of amending the ‎NSITF Act to enable it execute other aspects of social protection.

He also said that NSITF has begun aggressive training of its staffers in readiness for the expansion of its mandate.
Speaking in Abuja at the orientation for its staff, Agaka hinted that NSITF Act would soon be amended by the National Assembly.
He explained that the NSITF is implementing only compensation for workplace injury out of the nine branches of social security as spelt out by the ILO Convention 102 of minimum standard of social security.

His words: “The amended law will enable NSITF do more than the employees’ compensation scheme it is currently running. 

The other areas of social protection include: old age pension, survivor, family benefit, unemployment benefit, and invalidity benefit. Medical benefit, sick benefit and workplace injury benefit that we are implementing. 
For us to execute other aspects the law establishing the scheme has to do be amended and that is on-going at the National Assembly.”

Agaka stressed that the Fund has amassed massive capacity to add more arms of social security to its present mandate.

“NSITF can add the invalidity benefit, which has correlation with what we are doing. We can also factor in the survivor benefit, which has correlation with employees compensation scheme because these three work hand and hand and we developed the capacity to add more aspects of social security with what we are doing already,” he said.

He said NSITF has developed training modules that are specifically weaved to meet the occupational needs of its staffers.

He explained: “We have a training calendar, which takes into cognizance the need of every staff and we are faithfully implementing. We also have generic training that cuts across employees of different departments, units and sections. We also have specific function-based training programmes like departmental, sectional and other areas.

We are also re-channeling our resources to capacity building, training and re-training which are all aimed at boosting our ability to deliver real-time service to enrollees of Employees Compensation Scheme (ECS). We see ourselves as a learning organization hence the desire to continue to expose our staff to as many beneficial training programmes that are available.”

While stressing the importance of the scheme to the welfare and wellbeing of workers, Agaka explained that no worker is left to cater for himself or herself is case of sustaining workplace related injury or death.

He added: “The scheme steps in whenever a worker sustain injury in the workplace not only to assume the financial burden of treatment or medical expenses, we pay compensation for disability and replacement of body parts if necessary, counseling and embarking on physiotherapy of workers when necessary.

The benefits for the employers because when such contingency happens, employers do not have to pay or look after such a worker, the NSITF assumes that responsibility. The most important factor is the fact that treatment does not have limitation to the burden we can compensate and it could even be more than what the employer has contributed.
For the employee, he or she is confident to do his or her job to the best of his or her knowledge without any fear because he or she knows that there is a plan by the scheme to look after whatever happens in the course of work. That automatically leads to improved productivity.”

The NSITF boss highlighted that the compliance level is not an event but a process, noting that “the labour landscape is dynamic and keep changing.

“Employers keep changing so also the employees. What they do also change and keep changing. The level of sectoral buoyancy also changes as dictated by the economic fortunes of the country. 
What we can say right now is that the scheme is still growing. We have registered over 36,000 employers and more than 7million employees. We have also paid compensation to more than 6,000 employees to tune of over 700million.” He added