Deadline to redress ‘apartheid pensions’

2011-11-21 00:00

THE Public Service Co-ordinating Bargaining Council (PSCBC) is calling on all public service employees — including municipal workers, teachers, doctors and nurses affected by discriminatory pension practices under apartheid, to come forward and seek compensation.

The deadline for submissions is March 31, 2012, and is open to all public servants who were employed on September 2, 1998.

The pension redress campaign has been described as part of the second and final process of the PSCBC programme launched on May 24, 2010, by Public Service and Administration Minister Richard Baloyi.

PSCBC chairperson Weizmann Hamilton said that the programme was adopted by way of two resolutions on pension restructuring.

Resolution 7 of 1998 and resolution 12 of 2002 recognise the tenure of non-pensionable service under apartheid, with compensatory measure to redress this.

Hamilton said discriminatory pension practices identified under the programme affect those employees targeted on the basis of race, gender or status or those employees admitted to temporary pension funds due to their medical/physical status as well as former municipal policemen incorporated in the South African Police Service during 1989, and still belong to municipal pension funds.

The redress will also recognise breaks in pensionable service for employees who were dismissed for participating in strikes in the former Transvaal and Natal provincial administrations between 1987 and 1993.

“In order to implement the redress, the PSCBC, in consultation with various public sector unions, has established task teams in all provinces and national departments.

“They will be responsible for the marketing of the redress opportunity, assisting with the completion of application forms and for communicating the results of the process to applicants.

“We urge all those who qualify to come forward and stake their claim to these funds.”

A special fund, established by the Government Employees Pension Fund to finance the programme, will provide compensation to employees who have left the public service on the basis of the recalculated pension benefit.

Employees still in service will have their pension service adjusted in line with recognised periods.

“The redress is valid until March 31, 2012, therefore we urgently require beneficiaries to come forward before the deadline period.”

Potential beneficiaries are asked to submit their forms to the KZN premier’s office, which co-ordinates this, or else to approach their departments and unions to collect forms for submission.

“Therefore once all the submissions have been made, the cost will be calculated to determine how much needs to be paid out and if more beneficiaries come forward, then the fund will be adjusted,” said Hamilton.

• witness@feveronline.co.za

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