Wednesday, 23 April 2014
Retirement age- Zambia
By MacPherson Mukuka
The debate on the proposed upward adjustment of the retirement age by Government from 55 to 65 has continued. Some people spoken to feel those who are not yet employed will a likely to stay for a long time without finding jobs whilst those in employment may die before they retirement bearing in mind the nation’s life expectancy.
Meanwhile, a public forum was yesterday held in Lusaka under the auspices of the Labour institute of Zambia with financial support from the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Foundation (FES), with the main aim of strengthening social dialogue on the review of the retirement age policy.
The forum was attended by various stakeholders in the labour sector, including the biggest employer, the government.
And Government has expressed hope that the retirement age policy reforms will inevitably lead to pension reforms in the country.
Labour and social security’s deputy Minister Rayford Mbulu says there are challenges with the existing social security systems which Government is set to fix through wholesome reforms.
He said, government believes that there many positives associated with the policy especially at this time when the nation’s Gross Domestic Product is rising.
Mr. Mbulu added that another positive that a longer retirement age is likely to bring is affordability repayment terms for house loans.
The deputy Minister further pointed out that Government has embraced the policy of home empowerment for workers which has resulted in the rise of the Mortgage market.
And FES programmes Manager Cathy Sikombe has pledged her organisations continued support to different stakeholders in the labour sector on matters on labour reforms.
Meanwhile, Labour Institute of Zambia Executive Director Clement Kasonde says his organization’s aim is to bring together various stakeholders from the labour market to dialogue in order for all the players to benefit from all labour reforms whilst putting government on the centre of the discussions.The debate like any other needs total participation from all stakeholders if positive results are to be obtained.
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