The National Social Security & Welfare Corporation (NASSCORP) now has a new operating law. It is called “An Act to Repeal Decree No. 14 of the People’s Redemption Council of the Armed forces of Liberia and to Create a new Chapter 89 of the Executive Law Establishing the National Social Security and Welfare Corporation of the Republic of Liberia.”
The new Act replaces Appendix 14-1 to Decree No. 14 by the People’s Redemption Council of the Armed Forces of Liberia Repealing Chapter 89 of the Executive Law entitled An Act to Establish the National Social Security and Welfare Corporation of the Republic of Liberia and Welfare fun, which was used by NASSCORP for 37 years as its operating instrument.
The new Act was passed by the National Legislature on December 27,2016 and signed by President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf on February 13, 2017, after which it was printed into handbills.
With the passage of this new Act, the administration of the civil service pension program has been abolished the transferred to NASSCORP for incorporation into the National Pension Scheme. Therefore, former civil servants and public servants that were receiving pension benefits under the civil service pension program will continue to receive such pension benefits under the administration NASSCORP.
Additionally, the new Act stipulates that, “Every person to whom Decree No. 14 applied before amendment to said Act shall continue to be credited for the number of months that person has contributed to social security scheme.”
Under the new Act, government shall make budgetary allotment for the payment of existing pension liabilities under the defunct civil service non-contributory pension program to former civil servants and public servants who acquired rights under the civil service pension program.
It also urges government to make budgetary allotment for the payment of accumulated pension liabilities of the Government due NASSCORP in settlement of pension premium for public-sector employees.
The new Act extends coverage of the social security pension program to the President of Liberia, the Vice President of Liberia, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Chief Justice of the Supreme court of Liberia, the President Pro-Tempore of the Liberian Senate, members of the Legislature, Justices of the Supreme Court of Liberia, members of the Judiciary and cabinet ministers, the Police and other paramilitary organizations.
Notable changes in the new Act include increase in the contribution rate from 7.75% to 10%, increase of the vesting period from eight years four months to 12 years, the payment of survivor’s pension in lump-sum, and the receipt of death benefit by widower without the recondition of dependence of his wife for support as contained in the old law.
With such broad mandate, the National Social Security & Welfare Corporation, observers believe, will” burn the candle at both ends” to measure up the expectations.