By Mariama Jallow
The managing director of the Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation, Abdoulie Tambedou has disclosed that state-owned enterprises owe the corporation over D2 billion.
Addressing over 500 pensioners over the weekend, Mr Tambedou said the government has accepted to only take over D810 million out of the D2.2 billion. “In April 2020, we reached an agreement with the Ministry of Finance for the government to take over a loan of D810 million owed to the cooperation by Nawec. The remaining SOEs are mainly struggling. We would continue our engagements with government in this regard,” he said.
SSHFC has gone through some difficult times under former president, Yahya Jammeh. In 2017 the corporation’s finance head Abdoulie Cham told the Janneh Commission that Jammeh’s Kanilai Group International (KGI) owed the pension’s body over USD 35 million equivalent to D 1.7 billion.
He said the impact of Covid-19 has led to heavy withdrawals of savings due to those losing their jobs.
“Since my appointment at the helm of the corporation in April 2020, I have tried to steady the ship and to make sure that the excesses of the previous regime are never repeated as per the slogan of the TRRC ‘Never Again’. We have tried to work on the trajectory of improving the financial status of the corporation to ensure that the deficits of the Actuarial valuation of 2014 of D518 million, reduced to a deficit of D29.8 million by the December 2017 valuation are improved upon in the December 2020 valuation,” he said.
Tambedou said now that the Covid-19 vaccine is being administered he is hopeful the economy will start to recover which will subsequently lead to an increase in membership in the SSHFC.
Mr Tambedou assured pensioners of his administration’s commitment to ensure excesses from the former regime will not be repeated.
Last week Abubakar Darbo of GRTS was elected as the Federated Pension Scheme representative while Mrs Memunatou Junisa Camara, of Ocean Bay Hotel was elected as the NPF representative, and Alagie Alieu Faal, a former SSHFC employee is elected to represent the pensioners.