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ENPF TO BE CONVERTED BY YEAR END

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MBABANE – A seven-month target has been set for the conversion of Eswatini National Provident Fund (ENPF) into a pension fund.


Minister of Labour and Social Security Makhosi Vilakati yesterday disclosed that he was fully aware that every stakeholder was highly expectant on the update of the conversion of the fund.


Vilakati assured stakeholders that this was his first assignment since he got into office, and some major strides had been achieved to date.
“The bill is with the LAB (Labour Advisory Board), which is a tripartite structure wherein inputs are being made, and the target is by the end of the month it should be presented to Cabinet before being tabled to Parliament.

I am very optimistic that by the end of this year we would have the legislation on our hands,” said Vilakati during the stakeholders’ forum convened at Happy Valley yesterday.   

    
Challenged


The minister challenged every stakeholder to make use of the platform and make meaningful contributions that would ensure that ENPF grows to be a multi-trillion organisation.
Vilakati mentioned that growth of the fund was of particular interest to all stakeholders, including government, for they know that if ENPF grows, members would absolutely get improved benefits that would improve their lifestyles even when they retire.


And if all emaSwati have improved benefits in old age, the Kingdom of Eswatini will never be the same. Elderly people shall drive the latest cars and own businesses in retirement out of the disposable income they would have had out of ENPF.


Vilakati said this year’s theme was entitled ICT as an enabler of improved social security service delivery and managerial performance in Southern Africa.
The minister quizzed how Information Technology transform the future of service delivery? He said this question took him back to when  one had to join a long queue just to withdraw cash in a bank.


This was before Automated Teller Machines (ATMs).
“As I observed the improvements made locally and beyond the borders of the kingdom, I was absolutely convinced that indeed ICT can be an enabler to improved service delivery,” Vilakati admitted.


Smiled


The minister said as soon as he smiled to the above conviction, he was struck by another question. This time around, the question was on how ICT could be an enabler to improved social security service delivery and managerial performance.


The minister said he would have erred, however, not to mention that government had recognised the role that Information and Communication Technology (ICT) could play in socio-economic development.


 Vilakati recounted that in 2017, government launched an e-government communication strategy meant to drive national innovation, entrepreneurship and public service delivery through the use of ICTs.


The strategy was presented as an important tool to promote and market e-government services to the public to allow their extensive use and present to citizens and the business community, the benefits brought by technology.


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