By Our Reporters.
The Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development Hon. Matia Kasaija has appointed a new Board of Directors for the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) for the next three years effective September 01, 2021.
The 12th NSSF Board is headed by Dr. Peter Kimbowa, a Corporate Governance and Management expert. Dr Kimbowa, who is also the Team Leader at the CEO Summit Uganda– a private sector Think Tank, Managing Partner at IFE Consultants Limited, is an award-winning Business Leader.
He replaces Mr Patrick Byabakama Kaberenge, whose term expired on August 31, 2021, after serving for the last six years.
The Minister also appointed to the Board four representatives of the trade unions, two representatives of employers through the Federation of Uganda Employers (FUE).
The Minister re-appointed Mr Aggrey David Kibenge representing the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development (GLSD), and Mr Patrick Ocailap, representing the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development.
Hon Kasaija also appointed Dr Eng Silver Mugisha and Mr Fred K. Bamwesigye representing Employers through the Federation of Uganda Employers (FUE).
Others appointed are: former Workers Member of Parliament Hon. Dr Sam Lyomoki and Ms Penninah Tukamwesiga representing workers under Central Organisation of Free Trade Unions (COFTU); Mr Julius Bahemuka and Mr Hassan Lwabayi Mudiba, also representing workers under the National Organisation of Trade Unions (NOTU).
The NSSF Managing Director Mr. Richard Byarugaba will continue serving as the only Executive member of the 12th Board.
Speaking after his appointment, Mr Kimbowa said he views the appointment as a challenge given the stability the Fund has enjoyed over the last decade.
“It is a big challenge at a personal and professional level, because the Fund has been very successful beyond expectations over the last 8 years or so.
He said:” We shall find out what is missing and build up on the successes and ensure stability of the Fund for the future.
Mr Kimbowa said his vision for the next three years is three-fold – reshape and repurpose the investment portfolio to make it more responsive to the market, take advantage of the 5th industrial revolution by prioritising digitisation and ensure the right culture for NSSF .
He also pledged to work with all stakeholders in building mutual trust with management while raising substantive issues that improve governance of the Fund.
“We shall ask the right questions, be open minded with a deep sense of curiosity but we must also be willing to remain agile and very adaptive, and compliant to the changing world order.
NSSF Managing Director Mr Richard Byarugaba applauded outgoing board for providing oversight and leadership when the Fund and entire retirement benefits sector was preparing for reforms to be ushered in by the NSSF Amendment Bill (2019) that is expected to be enacted this year.
“The appointment of Dr Kimbowa, a corporate governance expert is a message from the Minister that he wants to maintain stability the Fund has enjoyed over the last decade, but also prepare us for a new era,” he said.
Mr Byarugaba said the new Board has been appointed at an opportune moment to steer the Fund through a transition as it positions itself to play a significant role in the expansion of social security coverage and expanding the long-term savings space in Uganda.
“I believe the new Board will ably provide strategic leadership as we exploit the opportunities provided by the milestone occasioned by the legislation once it is assented to by the President.
He said: “Our focus includes expansion of coverage to the informal sector, cementing the alternative savings through voluntary top ups and mid-term benefits.”
NOTU Chairman General Mr Usher Wilson Owere told the Workers Eye that they expect the new board to be vigilant and responsive in pursuit of protecting workers savings.
” We would like to see a more vibrant and stable social security fund that is mindful of need to safeguard workers’ savings and invest their money in realistic ventures and real estate projects.
He said the NSSF management under Mr Richard Byarugaba has perfoemed well, but hastened to add the coming in of a new board should add impetus in tyhe Fund and serve workers deligently.
Central Organisation of Free Trade Unions (COFTU) Deputy Secretary General and NSSF Board member Ms Peninnah Tukamwesiga told the Workers Eye that their main mandate is to provide direction for the fund in the strategic function and implementing the vision, mission and goals of the Fund.
“We shall achieve our goals by ensuring we have the right management team that we can work together to deliver on these objectives,” she said..
Counsel Penninah said they a fiduciary duty to protect the Fund’s assets and members’ investments, adding that it is her main interest at the Fund.
She said:” As a workers’ representative who is also an active saving member of the Fund, I have to ensure that workers’ savings are invested in the most proper manner so that a good interest is earned on our savings, and the fund’s assets are well managed.”
The Trade Unionist and Legal practitioner said she would ensure that rules the board establishes for the fund are policy based to allow the board and management a leeway in achieving the goals and objectives of the business.
Ms Tukamwesiga said as a member of the board and an advocate of the High Court, she has all the tools to ensure that there is good governance systems at the Fund and management is legally compliant to its obligations, ensure monitor and control plus timelyannual auditing.
The National Social Security Fund Uganda is a multi-trillion Fund mandated by Government through the NSSF Act, Cap 222 (Laws of Uganda) to provide social security services to employees in the public and private sector.
NSSF is the most profitable, trustworthy, efficient, secure, innovative and dynamic social security provider that guarantees safety, security and a competitive return on members’ savings, delivering an annual return of investment of over 2% above the 10-year inflation average.
The Fund manages assets worth over Ushs 15.4 trillion invested in Fixed Income, Equities and Real Estate assets within the East African region. As the largest Fund in East Africa by value, NSSF has the ambitious goal of growing Assets Under Management to Ushs 20 trillion by 2025.
Since 2012, the Fund is regulated by the Uganda Retirement Benefits Regulatory Authority(URBRA) while Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development is responsible for policy oversight.
The new NSSF Board will serve for the next three years until August 31, 2024..
The New NSSF Board of Directors
Mr. Peter Kimbowa ,Chairman – Independent
Mr. Richard Byarugaba, Member – NSSF Managing Director
Patrick Ocailap, Member Representative Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development
Aggrey David Kibenge, Member – Representative Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development
Ms.Peninnah Tukamwesiga, Member – Representative Central Organization of Free Trade Unions (COFTU)
Hon. Sam Lyomoki, Member Representative Central Organization of Free Trade Unions (COFTU)
Mr Julius Bahemuka, Member – Representative National Organization of Trade Unions (NOTU)Mr Mr. Hassan Mudiba Lwabayi , Member – Representative National Organization of Trade Unions (NOTU)
Mr. Fred K. Bamwesigye, Member Representative Federation of Uganda Employers
Eng. Silver Mugisha, Member Representative Federation of Uganda Employers ■