Challenges Faced
On a day-to-day basis, the Pensions Department also handles a large volume of correspondence as well as visitors, with an average of 700 letters and 200 visitors daily while about 2,000 claims are filed at the Department every month. The Department is also currently handling a payroll of over 180,000 active pensioners and more than 150,000 semi-active files held in the Registry.

Delays in processing of pensions can occur from either of three parties: -

    The Ministry or Department where it does not lodge the officer claim papers on time  this will be the case where the complainant writing to the Press does not have a Pension Number. In such cases, the Pensioner is advised to contact his parent Ministry.
    The Pensions Department where it delays in processing the officer claim because the required information is missing from the claim documents and correspondences have to be exchanged to get the information.
    The pensioner/beneficiary where they do not remit information requested either by the Ministry or the Pensions Department.

On items 1 and 2, the Pensions Department working with the Ministries has embarked on the following measures to address the delays particularly those occasioned in the Department: -

Restructuring the Claims delivery system between Ministries/Departments and the Pensions Department. Ministries and Departments are required to notify retiring officers of their impending retirement at least twelve (12) months before their retirement date and file the claims papers at the Pensions Department at least nine (9) months before retirement.

Computerisation: A new IT system is to be installed to reduce the number of manual interfaces required in the current computer system in the processing of pensions. This will address not only the software but also ensure complete computer networking and ultimately linkages to the Personnel processing system so that officers records are automatically filed at the Pensions Department upon notification of retirement. Use of Internet facilities is also being considered to facilitate faster communication with pensioners via e-mail.

Payment through the bank: Pensioners should take the initiative to streamline their banking issues to so that their cheques are not returned owing non-operational bank accounts.