As of September last year, 7,951 criminal cases were pending in court against defaulting employers. We do not take delight in prosecuting employers before the law court.
“But it only becomes a necessary last resort when all eligible means to settle the debts have failed,” Ms Emefa Agonyo, SSNIT Public Relations Officer, said at the Ghana News Agency discussion platform on Thursday.
Speaking on the topic: “Sustainability of the SSNIT Scheme: Measures, Policy Interventions to deal with it,” Ms Agonyo said through the prosecutions a total of GHC230 million cedis was retrieved from the cases that were successfully prosecuted.
Ms Agonyo stressed that SSNIT Management also must ensure that the social security contribution (Tier 1) of workers were duly paid by their employers.
“When employers default, especially after they have been engaged and reengaged, it’s important the law takes its full course because every worker has a right to be paid their social security contribution,” Ms Agonyo stated.
She explained that before SSNIT opted for prosecutions, they engaged the defaulting companies and entered into an agreement with their management on the terms of payment.
She said when employers subsequently defaulted even in the terms of payment agreement, they were categorized and a list of defaulters published in the national dailies before taking the prosecution option.
Regarding debts owed to the Trust, Ms Agonyo said Management of SSNIT had not relented in its efforts to retrieve all arrears owed the Scheme by employers.
“Since we rely on contributions to pay benefits, we constantly put in measures to strengthen our compliance efforts to reduce debt owed. This would, in turn, improve the sustainability of the Scheme,” she noted.
Mr Francis Ameyibor, Ghana News Agency Tema Regional Manager, on his part, called for engagement between state and non-state actors and the media to ensure that the public is well-informed on national issues.
He, therefore, commended SSNIT for collaborating with the GNA for the dissemination of news on its operations.
Mr Ameyibor urged the public, especially workers in the private sector, to be interested in the payment of their contribution to SSNIT.