Celebrities advocate pensions as a financial management tool for retirees
Veteran actor David Dontoh, who was among the advocates chosen to lead the pensions campaign, has urged people in the creative industries to use this product to save for a “rainy day”.
According to him, he believes the pensions would serve as a financial management tool for those in the creative industries as they retire.
He made the comments as the National Insurance Commission (NIC) launched a series of public pension education efforts as part of its efforts to deepen the country’s pension market.
An annuity is a contract between a person, usually a retiree, and an insurance company in which the insurer promises the owner of the product periodic payments, most often beginning upon retirement.
A person buys an annuity with either a single payment or a series of payments called premiums.
In his interaction with some key stakeholders in the media and entertainment industry who have been chosen to lead the advocacy group, Insurance Commissioner Dr. Justice Ofori that most pension agreements offer an opportunity to earn while you are still in retirement.
He said it is therefore necessary for every individual to take out an annuity product as it guarantees a stress-free life after retirement.
This would help the individual maintain a decent lifestyle and mitigate the impact of the rising cost of living that marks retirement.
“This is an area that is largely unknown or misunderstood to many people, particularly in our part of the world.
“The campaign we are launching with you as spearheads is therefore intended to raise awareness among the general public of the need to include lifetime income solutions such as pensions in a comprehensive retirement plan,” said Dr. Ofori.
Other advocates included Gyedu Blay Ambulley, Oheneyere Gifty Anti, Nana Yaa Konadu, Abeiku Aggrey (Santana) and Nana Adwoa Awindor. Others include Saddick Adams, Reggie Rockstone, Stephen Tetteh Charway and Alhaji Salifu Abdul-Daim!
Some of them lamented the situation that many people in the creative industries have the idea that they can earn royalties from their works even if they no longer exist.
“And that’s why a lot of our creatives look pathetic in old age. That’s because they didn’t have insurance arrangements to help them plan for a safe, reliable future,” said one of the advocates.
They were excited by the fact that pensions as described would therefore help creatives save for a rainy day when they have to get up and work more.
dr Ofori said the development of the bond market is part of the NIC’s effort to harness synergies from the bond market.
He said the Commission took these steps taking into account the lump sums from Tier 2 and Tier 3 available to those eligible to retire under the new pension scheme.
“With stakeholder consultations largely complete, the NIC has already issued the requirements that life insurance companies wishing to write annuities must meet.
“Our collaboration with GIZ to organize capacity-building workshops on pension design and sales was now complete, which is why we are here today,” he explained.
Guarantee of a constant income
In an interview with the media, Dr. Ofori, the NIC has recognized that many post-retirement people find it difficult to survive after receiving their lump sums from the Tier 2 pension system, and are therefore forced to rely solely on the monthly payments from their Social Security contributions , which usually requires some coverage from their own financial institutions such as pensions.
He said the pension is therefore a guarantee of constant income throughout a person’s life.
“Rather than taking your lump sum and not knowing how to manage it, it’s good to give it to a life insurance company that can manage the funds and guarantee you a monthly income for the rest of your life,” he said.
He also assured the public that there are regulations in place to ensure such funds are invested in secured assets so there is no risk of losing the money.
“Annuities have strict guidelines that we always enforce and not every company is allowed to sell annuities.
“Before you are allowed to do this, you must undergo a thorough screening so that we are satisfied that the future of the people placed in your hands is well protected,” he assured.
planning for retirement
“Anything you do in your earlier years as a creative you get a lot of engagements, but as you get older the engagements reduce to a point where you might only do one production a year. Will you live off this one production?
“Therefore it is necessary for all of us to see this as something that has come at a good time so that we can prepare for our future,” he said.
Live on pensions
For his part, popular radio presenter Abeiku Santana said that while pensions are very popular in developed countries, the situation is different in this part of the world.
He said the NIC’s decision to raise awareness of this product was a step in the right direction, as it would help people retire peacefully and live on their pensions.
“We should also demystify the notion that pension plans are for the formal public sector. People in the private and informal sector must also show great interest.
“Many people in the creative arts industry come to us as they age to solicit funding to support their needs, but if they had known about this product in their present days they would have embraced it, so it’s important that we do it noise about this product,” he added.
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