MP’s zeroed in on SNPF annual report for FY 2021

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Chairman of the Finance and Expenditure Committee Faleomavaega Titimaera Tafua presented the Annual Report for the National Provident Fund 2020/2021 for Parliament’s deliberation on Wednesday. They presented the overall findings and recommendations which include the increasing Members of Parliament contributions to 15%.

The Committee also recommended the Fund to look into ways to strengthen the collection of arrears recorded in its Annual Report 2020/2021 and also for the SNPF to urge Companies and Businesses to promptly pay their staff members’ contributions that have been deducted from their staff’s salaries, as well as taking into account the effects of regulations used for collecting the employee’s contributions.

Furthermore, the Committee recommends the Fund to include the dividend benefit under the Parliamentary Pension Scheme for Members of Parliament.

Leader of the opposition Fonotoe Lauofo Pierre believes Members of Parliament are not eligible for the NPF’s %. 

He zeroed in on the recommendation of a 15% increase for Members and cited the Senior Citizens Pension Scheme whereby they have its own separate Annual Report and is under the Standing Orders Committee, and highlighted that a consultant advised a 17.3% increase in parliament member’s contribution to NPF however, he noticed that in the report it outlines a 15% increase instead. 

Furthermore, Fonotoe pointed out that in 2020, 9.1% was given to contributors and 8% in 2021 but suggests whether it is time to raise this to 10% for this Financial Year. 

The Member commended the NPF for the noted surplus in the Annual Report. 

Deputy Speaker Auapa’au Mulipola Alofaitafua pointed to the recommendations that a consultant recommended for a 17.3% increase in Members of Parliament contribution was mentioned on a matter considered under the Standing Orders Committee. 

Adding that the concern that such recommendation on the increase for the Members is reflected under the report of the Standing Orders Committee, thus the question should not be addressed in the current report as this is not the Committee that deals with Members Parliamentary Scheme. 

 MP Fuaava Amataga also took the floor and noted the decrease in the number of NPF Contributors from $33,000 to $32,0000 during the reporting fiscal year as a result of COVID-19. 

However, Fuava highlighted the increase in the number of contributions to NPF as a result of an increase in wages as well as, and the NPF managed to increase its revenue through other avenues during the uncertainties of covid. 

The member touched on the percentage offered by NPF to the public/contributors and sought clarification of the percentage received by members of parliament as he is unsure whether they are entitled to this SNPF payout. 

Furthermore, he sought clarification on how much parliament members are paying to NPF as a form of their contribution.