It’s only for members who lost their jobs: Tarutia
By DALE LUMA
THE National Superannuation Fund (Nasfund) expects to pay out around K260 million to members who lost their jobs since the Covid-19 state of emergency was declared nine weeks ago, an official says.
Chief executive officer Ian Tarutia said proper vetting of applications was important so that only those who had “actually lost their jobs from the impact of the pandemic” could be assisted.
“The vetting and the screening is important so that we assist only those members impacted by the Covid-19,” he said.
“They must meet the criteria, they must be unemployed, not stood down, and they’ve got to be actually terminated.”
Members of Nasfund and Nambawan Super are waiting for Parliament to approve the amendment to the Superannuation (General Provisions) Act 2013 so that they can withdraw their retirement savings. The House is expected to be recalled on the first week of next month.
Tarutia said they were collecting applications from affected members.
“We have basically modelled around K260 million, based on what will be the impact,” he said.
“Until that actually happens and applications come through, we can only make assumptions.”
Tarutia said the Government had mentioned a figure of K500 million in its initial economic stimulus package announcement.
“That K500 million comprises Nasfund, Nambawan Super and the other two funds,” he said.
Tarutia said they had put aside K300 million in anticipation of an influx of withdrawal applications.
The head of strategy implementation Turaho Morea said: “We are now going to accept withdrawal applications relating to Covid-19 so that we can start screening and validating that terminations are actually due to the Covid-19.”
Morea said members could apply to withdraw their savings if they had been terminated by businesses which had been impacted by the pandemic. “But we will not be paying unless the legislation (amendment) has been approved,” he said.
The fund has conducted a survey of its top 100 contributing employers to gauge the impact of the lockdown restrictions and staffing level in their operations. The fund is extending the survey to the 2,500 employers to gather data on what is important, especially the cash flow requirements to meet member payments, and to maintain investments opportunities.