Ask MPs to pass NSSF Bill 2019 - Byarugaba

Thursday February 13 2020

Mr Richard Byarugaba says the Bill should have

Mr Richard Byarugaba says the Bill should have been passed last year. PHOTO BY ALFRED TUMUSHABE  

By ALFRED TUMUSHABE

The National Social Security Fund (NSSF) Managing Director Richard Byarugaba has asked employees and employers to encourage Members of Parliament to pass the proposed amendments in the NSSF Act.

This, he said, will permit NSSF to introduce relevant products, promote saving for old age and boost growth of the economy.

Mr Byarugaba was addressing employers and employees from western region who contribute to NSSF in Mbarara on Tuesday.

The NSSF Bill 2019, has a raft of proposals, among which seek to expand social security coverage through voluntary contributions, provide midterm access, provide for the deference of taxes on contributions and empower the board to introduce products.

Eligible savers
Under the current law, only enterprises with five employees and above are eligible to register and save with NSSF.

Savers’ monthly contributions and investment income are taxed while the benefits are accessed after one has clocked 55 years.

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However, the proposed amendments, which were first tabled before Parliament last year, kicked up a storm with some Ugandans questioning some provisions, which among others, were proposing that government directly borrows from NSSF.

“If you have access to your MPs tell them to go to Parliament and pass the proposed law. MPs have to know that this is important because it will make sure that we give you products that are relevant. It [the Law] will allow you to be able to save for the midterm future and long term future, speak to your MPs to pass that law,” Mr Byarugaba said.

Out of the 19 million labour force in Uganda, he said, 2.5 million are registered with NSSF but only 800,000 are contributing and own the Shs12.5 trillion portfolio.

Expected to have passed
SSF had expected the Bill to have been passed by last year after it was presented to Parliament.

He urged MPs and responsible Ministries (Finance and Gender) to expedite the passing of the Bill to benefit the country.

“We expect that in the course of this year the Bill should leave the committees of finance and gender, come back to floor of Parliament and there should be a discussion so that it is passed.
By not passing it, the benefits that the country and members would be getting by increasing the saving products and investment opportunities are being derailed,” Mr Byarugaba said.

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