Business News of Saturday, 16 December 2017
The besieged management of the National Service Scheme (NSS), has cunningly withdrawn its compulsory insurance package slapped on service personnel across the country, after it was sued by some aggrieved personnel and also dragged to the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ).
The scheme in a statement, said the “insurance policy is now optional,” adding the decision to make the policy optional for interested national service personnel was taken at an Emergency Executive Council Meeting of the National Service Personnel Association (NASPA) in Accra on Wednesday.
But reports are that, insurance company, GLICO Life, led by Forkuo Kyei, might be dragging the NSS and its management to court seeking judgment debt against the state for breach of tntract.
The NSS Executive Director, Mustapha Ussif, in his signed statement said, the management of the scheme, has in the light of the decision suspended the mandatory GH¢15 deduction from the monthly allowance of service personnel.
The insurance policy for national service personnel, has now been made optional for interested national service personnel, who wish to sign onto the policy.
The decision was taken at an Emergency Executive Council Meeting of the National Service Personnel Association (NASPA) held in Accra today, after broad consultations with major stakeholders on the policy, and how best it would serve the interest of national service personnel, it claimed.
The statement said, “Management has therefore decided to suspend the mandatory monthly deductions of GH¢15 from personnel allowances. Management wishes to urge all national service personnel to remain calm as their concerns regarding the insurance policy are being addressed”.
It is unclear what the new arrangement between the National Service Scheme and the service providers will be since the secretariat signed the agreement with the intention of serving all personnel in state institutions.
The management is also yet to make public procedures interested personnel can follow to apply and benefit from the insurance policy.
Some disgruntled National Service personnel last week, sued the National Service Scheme and its Executive Director, Mustapha Ussif, over the GH¢ 15 compulsory insurance charges, saying the deduction from their allowance is unlawful and unreasonable. That case is yet to be heard.
Some National Service Personnel earlier in December petitioned CHRAJ, over the mandatory insurance package introduced for them by the National Service Secretariat.
According to them, the imposition of the insurance package infringes on their basic human rights since the decisions taken by the National Service Personnel Association (NASPA), does not bind all service personnel.
The National Service Scheme’s head, Mustapha Ussif, in the face of the resistance, repeatedly denied suggestions that the compulsory insurance package meant for all service personnel in the country is being imposed on the personnel.
He insisted that the personnel backed the insurance package, and even pushed the management of the Scheme to implement it.
He said the National Service Personnel Association of Ghana (NASPA), the group which represents service personnel across the country, decided unanimously at their Congress to back the policy.
The NSS partnered with MTN and Glico Life Insurance, to launch the life insurance cover for the over 90,000 personnel.
This compulsory insurance package spearheaded by various insurance companies was expected to pay claims to service personnel who get involved in accidents in their line of duty.
The claims vary from GH¢15,000 in cases of death or incapacitation and GH¢3,000 for cases of disability. As part of the insurance package, National Service personnel are entitled to a GH¢500 loan which is payable within six months.
A former Executive Director of NSS, Dr. Michael Kpessah-Whyte, had alleged that the compulsory insurance package is a venture to pay back a financier of the governing New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) election campaign.
According to him, the insurance scheme, may have been put together to reward the owner of a known insurance company, who supported the NPP’s campaign with GH¢1 million.
He is thus of the view that the policy is not in the interest of National Service persons, and that it constitutes “daylight robbery.”
However, GLICO Life, has denied allegations that its engagement with the NSS to provide an insurance package for National Service personnel, is a reward for the company, because the owner was a financier of the governing NPP.
The Managing Director of GLICO Life, Forkuo Kyei, in a statement said the allegations are unfounded, as GLICO Life, is part of five other companies offering the insurance package to the service personnel.