From Nnamani Adanna, Abuja
The Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF), says it has in the last one year, spent over N1.7 billon Naira as claims and compensations for rehabilitation of injured workers, death benefits as well as compensation for loss of man hour to their employers.
NSITF Managing Director, Dr. Michael Akabogu made this known while flagging off the year’s Customer Service Week at the Fund’s Headquarters in Abuja.
This was contained in a statement signed by the NSITF On Tuesday.
He assured the public that the Fund will continue to ensure adequate and timely compensation for workers who suffer injury, disease or death in the course of work.
“We have as of today paid a total of 8668 death benefits amounting to N712,249,368 to beneficiaries of deceased employees; N193,538,878 disability benefits to 10,610 disabled employees, retirement benefits to 3,506 disabled employees to the tune of N3,330,621. We have as well provided artificial body parts to 54 persons amounting to N59,841,554, besides refunding medical expenses to 603 employers at the cost of N198,542,099 .
The Managing Director who was represented by the General Manager Finance and Accounts, Zwalda Ponkap revealed that 583 beneficiaries of death benefit are currently on the payroll of the fund while 772 beneficiaries of disability benefit and 235 retirement beneficiaries are equally on the payroll.
Speaking on the theme of this year’s Customer Service Week celebration which is “Celebrate Service,” Akabogu stated that the new focus of the fund is to transit from being a clearance house for claims and compensations to one that minimizes workplace accidents in order to optimize national productivity.
He said, “ customer service has turned a great tool for all organizations especially in the challenging environment we are in. It is a critical influencer for brand loyalty. If we serve our customers well, we will not only retain them but also make new ones.
“ Every staff of the NSITF must therefore be aware that we are at the forefront of social security in Nigeria and this is a heavy responsibility that must be discharged diligently. It is therefore an opportunity for us to re-dedicate ourselves to our duties to the office and to our larger customer base in the formal and informal sectors.
“ We are aware that the primary focus of the fund is not just the payment of compensation, rather prevention of work place mishaps and promotion of healthy work place in order to optimize national productivity.
“ In this wise, the fund has in the last one year given training to over 200 companies on Occupational Safety and Health preventive support across the six geo-political zones as well as conducted occupational safety and health inspection in over 3000 establishments.
“ I wish to use this opportunity therefore to call on all relevant stakeholders in private and public sectors to join hands with us in preventing occupational accidents and diseases. Our Occupational Safety and health Department has the necessary expertise to develop , implement, coordinate, and promote environmental, occupational health and safety policies across the nation.”
The flag off was later followed by road show which took the fund focal officers to major markets in the Federal Capital Territory. Customer Service Week is an annual week-long event celebrated globally.