The National Pension Commission (PenCom) has mandated that Retirement Savings Account (RSA) holders who are enrolled in the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) on or before July 1, 2019, must participate in the Data Recapture Exercise (DRE). This exercise, which covers active and retired RSA holders, commenced in August 2019.
The necessity for the DRE arose from the vital requirement to collect and maintain current, comprehensive, and accurate data of RSA holders. Additionally, the DRE aligns with the Federal Government’s directive for all data-generating organisations to harmonise their databases with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC).
To facilitate the DRE, PenCom introduced the Enhanced Contributor Registration System (ECRS). The ECRS is designed to verify the uniqueness of individuals registering under the CPS and update existing RSA holders’ records. The ECRS is seamlessly integrated with the NIMC.
It is mandatory for RSA holders in both the public and private sectors, as well as retirees, to participate in the data recapture exercise to update their personal information, including biometric data such as photos and signatures.
Not participating in the DRE carries significant implications for accessing pension services from Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs). For instance, only RSA holders who have completed their data recapture can transfer their RSAs from one Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) to another.
Contributors who have not undergone recapture will not be able to access retirement benefits upon retirement. Moreover, temporary access to 25 per cent of the RSA balance in cases of job loss and access to pension savings for procurement of residential mortgages are exclusively available to RSA holders who have completed data recapture.
RSA holders with multiple Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) who fail to recapture their data will experience delays in resolving their situations, potentially resulting in incorrect remittances by employers and delays in the payment of retirement benefits. Consequently, contributors with multiple RSA PINs must present all their RSA PINs during the data recapture process.
It is crucial to note that failure to participate in the DRE affects RSA holders’ ability to update registration records in the future.
For example, changes in name due to marriage, changes of employer, or alterations to the Next of Kin (NOK) information cannot be made if data recapture is not completed. Hence, it is in the best interest of RSA holders to participate in the DRE to avoid unnecessary delays in accessing services from PFAs.
PenCom has instructed all PFAs to issue acknowledgement slips to RSA holders who submit complete documentation for their data recapture. RSA holders will receive text messages within five working days, notifying them of the status of their data recapture (whether successful or not) after document submission.
Active contributors must visit their PFAs and provide their Staff Identity Card or any valid means of identification, such as a National Driver’s License, Permanent Voter’s Card, or International Passport. Additionally, they should present their Enrolment Slip issued by NIMC and Birth Certificate or Sworn Affidavit of Age Declaration for the DRE.
Retirees under programmed withdrawal or annuity should provide any valid means of identification, the Enrolment Slip issued by NIMC, and the Letter of Retirement issued by their employer for the DRE.
For RSA holders who have changed their surnames or first names, or both, after registration, the following documents must be presented to their PFA for recapture: Marriage Certificate (if applicable), Newspaper publication for the change of name, and Sworn Affidavit and Confirmation Letter for change of name from the employer (if still employed).
PenCom remains committed to the effective regulation and supervision of the pension industry to ensure that retirement benefits are paid as and when due.
Source: The Whistler