The National Social Security Authority (NSSA) will with effect from 1 October 2017 cease to pay pensioners who are not bio-metrically registered.
The move is meant to ensure that the increased pension pay outs are made to ‘deserving and entitled beneficiaries’.
The Authority recently increased monthly pension payouts from $60 to $80 per month. However, pensioners will start to enjoy these benefits after completion of the biometric registration of pensioners.
The Authority is currenty holding awareness campaigns to ensure that pensioners are up to date with the bio-metric registration process.
“We have an outreach programme and teams are moving out (biometrically) registering deserving beneficiaries. It is only after that that increments will be effected,” said Public Service, Labour and Social Services Minister Prisca Mupfumira on Monday.
Biometric registration involves capturing of one’s unique physical attributes such as DNA, fingerprints, retina and or iris patterns.
NSSA said Biometrics will help the authority to tell if the people they making payouts to are alive.
“With the increased pension benefit amount, it is even more imperative that only the deserving and entitled beneficiaries are paid,” said NSSA Board chairperson Robin Vela.
“The board remains concerned with the authenticity of its payroll,” Vela said.
As at July 7, NSSA had biometrically registered 152 862 beneficiaries against an estimated target of 164 200.
Minister Mupfumira said that biometrics would help weed out pension fraud as it would tighten the system and help prevent payments to non-existent people.
“Gone are the days when people would withdraw benefits of people who passed on long back,” Minister Mupfumira said
Minister Mupfumira also said pension payouts are expected to be increased again to $100 by January next year.
“After having a final position on the actuarial evaluation, we anticipate that by January 1, 2018 it will be raised to $100,” she said.
Source: New Ziana