GOVERNMENT is evaluating the feasibility of increasing monthly pension payouts to improve the welfare of pensioners, Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Deputy Minister Lovemore Matuke has said.
Principal beneficiaries are receiving minimum payouts of $80 per month, while the surviving beneficiaries are receiving a minimum of $32.
The last increase was in October 2017.
In an interview yesterday, Deputy Minister Matuke said:
"As Government, we tasked the National Social Security Authority (NSSA) to seriously consider increasing monthly pension payouts. NSSA is, therefore, in the process of conducting an evaluation to see what we can afford.
"Once the survey is complete, we'll be able to tell how much NSSA can pay pensioners monthly and when an increment can be effected".
He acknowledged that the current payouts were not enough to sustain pensioners, looking at the economic situation. Deputy Minister Matuke added that as civil servants receive cost of living adjustments from Government, it was fair for pensioners to also benefit.
Parliamentarians have been lobbying the Government to review pensioners' payouts, saying the economic environment has rendered the allowances ineffective.
Speaking in Parliament on Wednesday, Deputy Minister Matuke also warned companies who do not submit pension deductions to NSSA.
"It's not Government policy for companies to collect pension deductions and fail to submit them to the pensions' office.
"If Parliamentarians here know any companies that are not submitting pensions to the pensions authorities, it's important for them to let us know so that we deal with them.
"It's illegal for people not to submit employees' pensions," said Deputy Minister Matuke.