- Pensioners to meet Public Service Minister for the last time over issue
Mbabane – A dispute has ensued over the rightful custodian of the Public Service Pension Fund (PSPF). According to PSPF Pensioners President, Elliot Mkhatshwa, arrangements were being finalized to take government to court for allegedly stealing and controlling the Fund.
He said government is owning the PSPF unlawfully as according to the Public Service Pensions Order of 1993 the Public Service Pension Fund was established with the civil servants in mind. According to the regulations, 5 percent was said would come from employees, 15 percent from the employer. This means the contribution of the employer was to be added to that of employees and not that government has got shares by contributing,” he said.
He said there is now a perception that government has got the right to control the Fund because she has an interest as the major contributor of funds. “There is nothing like that and the public must know that there is nothing like that, government does not have even a cent in the Fund,” said the president.
Mkhatshwa said where government is wrong is to take control of the fund through theft. He said the government stole the Fund in 1999 after it was established in 1993. He said after stealing it in 1999, the government then converted it to a Category B parastatal. The president added that the government has been looking to see if there were any entities who noticed their act of stealing.
Unfortunately, no one challenged this wrong doing until it was recently discovered that government had taken control of their Fund when it does not belong the her but them (pensioners).
“We are now demanding back the Fund in accordance with the regulations of its establishment and the 2005 Act which clearly states that we are the owners of the Fund. We are now determined to take legal action to repossess the Fund from government.
We have all met as stakeholders and finalized talks, we all agree to approach the courts, we shall immediately do so. What is now left is for us to meet the Minister of Public Service (Mabulala Maseko) for the last time so that he is not taken by surprise when the matter is in court. We have tried all other remedies but were unsuccessful and therefore the courts are the only remedy left for us,” he said.
According to Mkhatshwa, the truth is that the operations of the Fund are administered by the Fund management, then there is a Board of Trustees, monitoring or guiding the operations of the Fund to ensure it does all that is required of it. “The minister and the others, they are the entities who are unlawfully involved in activities of the Fund. Bayachakela,” he said in vernacular.
“They do not qualify to be involved in the business of the Fund.